this is ridiculous. I hate how companies can get away with this because the individuals can't afford the legal battle that is needed. I get why they decided to freeze payments, but one instance is causing everyone else grief.BILOXI, Miss. — IF you don’t live near the Gulf Coast, you may have the impression that the area has fully recovered from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, the largest environmental disaster in American history. Sadly, that’s not the case for tens of thousands of gulf residents still trying to put their lives back together.
That is, however, what BP wants the public to believe — which is why it is now engaged in an aggressive legal and public-relations campaign to limit how much it pays individuals and businesses for the losses its reckless behavior caused. After having a hand in this huge disaster, the company wants to leave these communities to rebuild on their own, even as it takes in record profits.
The spill resulted in the release of more than 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico and the deaths of 11 people. In September 2011 a federal investigation found BP responsible for the leak, and in November 2012 the Department of Justice reached a court settlement with the company that included a $4.5 billion fine.
In 2010 the company set up a $20 billion fund to settle claims arising from the disaster, and since then it has made payments to hundreds of thousands of individuals and businesses affected by the spill. In 2012 a federal court took over supervision of the fund.
But tens of thousands of gulf residents still haven’t been fully compensated for their losses, and many are struggling to make ends meet. Many low-wage workers in the fishing and service industries, for example, have been seeking compensation for lost wages and jobs for three years. In many cases, their claims aren’t successful because they can’t afford the legal help required to navigate the complex claims process.