British Petroleum was recently ordered by a federal magistrate to pay fees exceeding $130 million for its settlement with affected businesses and residents along the Gulf Coast. The settlement stemmed from the disastrous offshore Deepwater Horizon chemical plant accident oil spill that occurred in 2010. This judgment came after BP attempted to block claims payments as the FBI investigated alleged misconduct by one of the attorneys working on the case. In addition to this, BP made complaints about a wider spectrum of problems with the claims program administrator. BP’s Attempts To Block Claims Payments BP’s disputes over administrative expenses are just another part of the company’s tough campaign to challenge the court-appointed program administrator. The oil company has also accused the administrator of misrepresentation of the settlement, which would have resulted in BP having to pay out billions of dollars. BP officials claimed that the amount reflected inflated claims and fictitious claims from businesses along the coast. While the judge ruled that BP’s refusal to pay was not reasonable, he also said that the claims program administrator would have to submit budget proposal documents earlier than previously agreed. The judge did this in hopes of keeping the claims facility from shutting down because of the issues at hand. The recent ruling on the oil company’s appeal supported an earlier court ruling that ordered BP to pay the settlement fees. However, an attorney for BP argued that it was unreasonable to expect the company to pay more than $130 million in fees without a more detailed proposal from the administrator. The company’s attorney further explained that the proposal received earlier was a summary and did not provide adequate backup details. Despite BP’s attempts to avoid paying fees through court filings, the company’s attorney says that the oil company is not trying to get out of paying fees. However, the claims program administrator said that BP’s refusal to pay fees will put the program in jeopardy. In addition to claiming that a member of the court-appointed program administrator’s office was wrongly receiving some of the claim funds, the company has accused two attorneys who have ruled on appeals of fraud. BP claimed that the attorneys had also represented claimants and had filed claims themselves. The company is also claiming that an employee in an Alabama office has helped numerous individuals and businesses file false claims. BP again renewed its claims delay request based on the recent allegations. Both parties are eagerly awaiting the ruling in the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that would overturn the claims program administrator’s settlement terms interpretations in regard to payouts. As it stands, awards are based on a comparison of expenses and revenues after the spill and before the spill. BP claimed that the calculation methods for this policy left it open to errors that would allow businesses to manipulate figures. Injury Or Wrongful Death In Industrial Accident Cases If there is one thing that is clear about BP’s case, it is that the oil company’s accidental spill caused widespread damage. When an offshore or onshore industrial plant is to blame for injury or wrongful death in industrial accident cases, affected individuals must be compensated. Another lesson that BP’s case has taught us is that industrial companies are known for fighting to avoid paying claimants or paying them the minimum. Having an aggressive and experienced attorney is essential if you want to get the compensation you deserve. If you are the victim of an industrial or chemical plant accident, or a family member has died as the result of one, you need a good industrial accident lawyer to represent you and protect your legal rights. It is important to file a claim in a timely manner, so contact an attorney today to discuss your situation.