Sunday, May 16, 2010

sad but true...

L is for litigation. According to the Times- Picayune:

So far, at least 74 cases involving the spill have been filed in federal courts along the Gulf Coast between Texas and Florida, including 38 in U.S. District Court in New Orleans. As of Wednesday, no suits had been filed in local courts in the New Orleans area, according to parish clerks.

A few suits are wrongful death cases. Most others aspire to be class actions and have been filed on behalf of fishers, restaurants and owners of Gulf Coast beach property. 

Most of the litigation won't crank up in earnest until after July 29, when a panel of federal judges meets in Boise, Idaho, to consider whether the cases should be consolidated into one big case in New Orleans, as most people harmed by the spill want, or in Houston, as BP has requested.

As the oil flows, so do the number of lawsuits. It took 20 years to wrap up the legal murky waters of the Exxon Valdez. Just when we thought the situation could not get murkier.


Life As I Know It Now said...

The company who owned the oil rig that went down have already collected over 400 million dollars from their insurance company but that same company wants to limit liability costs they face to about 20% of that....insane is it not!

nonnie9999 said...

it seems that with most class action suits, the only ones who get any real money are the lawyers. i hope there are criminal charges. some people need to go to jail for negligent homicide (or just plain murder) in order for the fatcats to really learn a lesson.

Fran said...

Lib~ I heard about Transocean trying to invoke the 1800's law to limit their liability to $27 million. In other news they just paid stockholders $1 billion in dividends to shareholders! for some odd reason the shareholder meeting was a closed door event.
Usually corporations are touting their success/profits. They are trying to keep theirs hushed. I sure as hell hope the judge deciding their request for limited liability has the billion dollar shareholder dividend update.

nonnie~ You're right it is the lawyers who get ahead in class action lawsuits, and they can drag on & on. I hope they organize this right-- wrongful death cases first, then on down the line. Can you imagine how many fishermen, seafood joints & livelihoods will be impacted?

Plus someone should litigate for the species & reefs that take the hit-- but no amount of money can reverse this mess. Just have to wait & see if the 500,000+ gallons of chemical dispersant made things worse.