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Gabrielle Lyn D'Alemberte
Gabrielle Lyn D'Alemberte
Attorney • (305) 343-5304

Causation Requirements for BP Settlement Claims

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Several days ago we wrote about how some businesses and individuals that are submitting claims under the BP Settlement will not be required to prove a causal connection between their economic loss and the 2010 oil spill. In other words, causation is presumed for businesses within certain geographic areas and carrying out specific types of activities.

But what about all the businesses that do have to prove that their economic losses were caused by the oil spill? What sort of information do these businesses have to provide?

The BP Settlement provides very specific information about the changes in revenue that must have occurred in order for the causation requirement to be met. In general, businesses will need to provide information about how their revenues changed in the wake of the BP oil spill, and how those changed revenues compare to a previous “benchmark period”—in other words, normal years of doing business. The terms of the settlement lay out very detailed revenue patterns in order to assess whether a change in revenue can be attributed to the oil spill.

Claimants have a few options for the years which they would like to have considered as their “benchmark period”. A claimant can use the year 2009; the average of the years 2008-2009; or the average of the years 2007-2009.

Under the terms of the settlement, claimants may also need to provide information other than just changes in revenue. For example, records that show customers leaving or contracts being cancelled; or how road closures affected the business; or documentation the shows customer registration—such as hotel registries).

Given the complexity of the formulas and documentation required, claimants may find it necessary to seek professional assistance. Businesses by the Beach can help answer questions and provide information.