As anticipated, BP has sought certiorari review before the United States Supreme Court of the Fifth Circuit’s business economic loss settlement decisions earlier this year. The oil giant’s latest effort is yet another in a long line of attempts to renege on the settlement the company negotiated, wrote and supported publicly just two years ago.
Needless to say, BP’s efforts to torpedo its own settlement are nothing short of extraordinary. After failing in the District Court, the company appealed the business settlement under the false pretense that another, undefined and unknown alternative causation parameter should exist in the settlement to tie a business’s losses to the oil spill. In reality, it’s undisputed that BP’s own lawyers negotiated and wrote objective causation parameters and formulas into the settlement. The company lauded these parameters as generous and proof of the great deal class members were getting if they chose to avail themselves of the settlement’s benefits.
Now, even after stating in open court that a claimant need not prove losses actually resulted from the oil spill if they met the settlement’s negotiated causation parameters, BP wants the Supreme Court to ignore the deal BP made and craft a new one that denies tens of thousands of claimants compensation the company promised to make.
It’s quite evident that BP is now at the end of the line. For good reason, both legally and from a moral perspective, the company has lost at every turn and at every stage of this appeal process. While BP’s secondary goal to delay and frustrate claimants has worked to some degree, it has been Gulf Coast claimants – many of whom have been waiting years for full compensation – who are suffering. We must all remain resilient and keep in mind the type of company BP is. At the end of the day, we are confident that BP’s onslaught will be overruled one more – and one last – time. It’s time for BP to quit playing games and learn to keep its word!
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