This week Judge Carl Barbier, who is presiding over the BP class action settlement that was reached in March of this year, issued an order extending the opt-out deadline for class members who wish to exclude themselves from the terms of the settlement. The new postmark deadline for submitting requests to opt-out is now November 1, 2012.
As claimants may recall, the BP Settlement automatically applies to anyone who is considered to be a member of the settlement class. In general, that includes individuals and entities living with the geographic region covered by the settlement and whose claims fall into one of the damage categories established in the Settlement. Geographically, the Settlement covers Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Specific Gulf Coast counties in Texas and Florida. To be bound by the Settlement the individual or entity’s claim must fall under one of several broad damage categories, including:
- Seafood Compensation Program
- Economic Damage Category
- Subsistence Damage Category
- Vessels of Opportunity Damage Category
- Vessel Physical Damage Category
- Coastal Real Property Damage Category
- Wetlands Real Property Damage Category
- Real Property Sales Damage Category
Any individual who meets both the geographic and damage category requirements will be bound by the terms of the Settlement unless they opt out by the November 1 deadline.
For additional information and guidance on what the BP Settlement might mean for you and if your claim is considered to be bound by the Settlement, Businesses by the Beach helps Gulf Coast residents and businesses to understand the terms and processes in the Settlement.