Horror Story from A Denied GCCF Claim

Shortly after the BP Deepwater Horizon rig explosion and oil spill, BP set aside $20 billion to try and make things right with those affected by the accident and the spill.  They set up the Gulf Coast Claims Facility (GCCF) and eventually named an allegedly impartial administrator, Kenneth Feinberg, to run the GCCF and process the claims fairly and efficiently.

Many Denied GCCF Claims Surface

For some, things seem to have gone well.  To date, over 168 thousand claims have been paid to the tune of nearly $3 Billion.  Unfortunately, when you consider that nearly half a million claims have been filed, you start to see that things are not all rosy after all.  Hundreds of thousands of claims have been denied.  The GCCF says that the claims were either submitted with inadequate supporting paperwork or were fraudulently filed.  Those missing paperwork to back up the claims have been returned to the sender with a demand for more proof.  All the while, Feinberg and the GCCF have announced in public that everything is going just fine and they are doing the best they can while being understaffed and overworked.

For those suffering in the depths of poverty and unemployment, all caused by something that should have never happened in the first place, and certainly not their fault, this is simply not good enough.  Reports continue to surface claiming that monies are being paid out to people completely unaffected by the Deepwater Horizon incident, while hundreds of thousands of others are seeing their claims denied without explanation.

A Denied GCCF Claim Horror story

One such victim is Dan Ward, of Florosa, Florida.  Mr. Ward is the owner of Gulf Coast Tire and Automotive.  He says that BP initially sent him three checks for $5,000 a piece over the summer in the days before the GCCF was set up.  Once the GCCF and Mr. Feinberg took over the process, his checks stopped coming.  After eight visits to the local claims office over the subsequent three months, he was continually told that his check would be ready any day.  On December 10, he finally received notification that his final claim was being denied.  No reason was given, and no explanation was offered.  Mr. Ward says that he filed all the required paperwork, including every bit of actual financial data down to the dollar showing that he lost more than 25% of his summer business because of a severe drop in the number of tourists visiting the Florida panhandle following the Deepwater Horizon accident.  Still, his claim was denied without any explanation.

Meanwhile, the Associated Press has reported that the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association sent letters to its members saying that “the checks are pouring in.”  Keith Overton, the chairman of the Association said that his beach resort in Saint Petersburg Beach had received an emergency payment and is expecting another check for $1.3 million to compensate its owners.  Something is definitely amiss at the GCCF.

70,000 People Agrees Not To Sue BP

I guess its obvious that many people do not read this blog or listen to people with a sound mind. Its amazing to me that 70,000 people has already applied for a Quick Claim with GCCF, they will get $5,000 for a personal cases that has already been approved as an emergency claim or $25,000 for a business.

Don’t take the $5,000 Quick Claim

That is like taking $100 bills and burning them, as the $5,000 people are getting right now is nothing compared to what was in store for them if they would just have an attorney look at their case. I just can’t believe people are not listening, Attorneys general from Gulf Coast states have warned people to be cautious before signing it, because they give up the right to later sue BP or the other 2 companies found guilty in the April 20 explosion and later oil spill in the Gulf Of Mexico.

The $5,000 Quick Claim Argument

So since people are not getting the message let me try and go over it again. First off, you are taking $5,000 now for an emergency claim because of the oil spill. That must mean that you have lost your job or income because of the oil spill. Now 70,000 people are saying by taking the $5,000 that this is over with let me just have $5,000 and I will be happy. Well what happens in May when the tourist do not come back to the gulf coast beaches, and you loose your job again or your income goes down. What are you going to do? I will tell you what you will do, you will scream and complain about GCCF and BP and how they pray on the weak, and made you take $5,000 in return for signing a legal waiver that insured them that you would not sue them for any future damage you might have.

Wait to take you Final Claim

If you think the $5,000 is enough to cover your final BP claim, to make you whole, and you don’t want an attorney to look at your case why don’t you wait a minute and see what this summer brings. If the tourist return and you work and income is back to normal by all means take the extra $5,000 from BP and GCCF. You can take this option all the way up to August of 2013, so wait and see what will happen this summer with the tourist and business in general before you take a decision that potentially will be very bad for you.

Better Offer Might Come From GCCF

It could also be that GCCF will send you a letter  with a better offer, I guess its almost like Deal or No Deal where the longer you wait a better offer might come, but in this case you are sure about the $5,000 you can always get that from GCCF. So try and see if you can wait it out a little bit.

Potential in Oil Spill Trials

Oil spill cases starts going to trial and you will see the money that you potentially can go after, not these $5,000 hand outs, I am talking really money for your claim in the $50,000-$350,000 range if you have a good claim.

The formula you should look at to see what you case are potentially worth is the following and  I am talking without going to trial just a settlement with GCCF. Your payout during the emergency claims period, lets says it was $20,000 now times that by 4 years and you would have the settlement an attorney could get you. So in a straight up settlement you should be looking at a minimum of $80,000.

If you take it a steep future and contact an attorney that you will find on these pages you are looking at Punitive damages if it goes to trial and we could be talking the $80,000 would turn into $800,000. So taking a stupid $5,000 now just because you need the money right now is something you should think long and hard about.

Why not sell you BP claim to somebody else that does not have the money stress that you have and divide with this personal friend or business man the portion above the $5,000 you will get if you take your claim to a final settlement or a trial. There are many ways you can do something like this if you really need the money bad now but don’t want to look stupid 6 month to a year down the road.