The Destin beach’s white sugar sand was in full glory yesterday. While flying back to Tampa and looking down on the crystal blue water and the most gorgeous stretch of beach in the United States, I told Corey Harris that such beauty and fun is being wasted because of fear caused by the oil spill. A funny YouTube video about the current threat of oil and dragons makes the point:
 

https://youtube.com/watch?v=11hGx8eMi_M%26hl%3Den_US%26fs%3D1%26rel%3D0%26color1%3D0x2b405b%26color2%3D0x6b8ab6
Continue Reading Dragons Attacking Gulf Coast Beaches are a Bigger Menace Than the Oil Spill

The tragedy of loss of human life and damage to the environment when discussing the BP Oil Spill cannot be overstated. The important role that accountants and business interruption experts will play helping prove financial loss cannot be overstated either. Experienced professionals like Bob Glasser, noted in yesterday’s Are Lawyers Pandering for BP Oil Spill Clients Going to Get Sued for Malpractice in Follow-up Class Actions? A Guest Blog Regarding Business Claims By Bob Glasser Explains and Guest Blogger Bruce Smith, who wrote The Forensic Accountant’s Role In Business Interruption And Business Income Claims, should be in high demand from businesses and entities that lose revenue and income as a result of this oil spill. Attorneys presenting these lost income claims should consider hiring such individuals as consultants and financial expert witnesses.


Continue Reading Accountants and Business Interruption Experts Will Play an Important Role Recovering BP Oil Spill Income Loss Claims

There has been a disgraceful amount of pandering by potentially incompetent lawyers to sign up BP Spill Victims. Many of these lawyers are experienced only in personal injury cases, and many are not licensed in the affected states and are using the internet to lure clients. One attorney from California, who is not licensed in Florida, gave a seminar this week in Destin, Florida, about his services. Many of these attorneys have no intention of providing sound disaster recovery advice that accountants and other experienced attorneys can provide. The "elephant in the room" is that they do not have the experience or resources to give competent legal advice but are banking on contingent percentage contracts that obligate clients to sums far in excess of what is reasonable. These attorneys do not have the competence or experience to discuss business interruption concepts because they have never practiced in this area of the law. Many attorneys are advertising and signing up clients without then doing anything that is reasonably required under the circumstances.


Continue Reading Are Lawyers Pandering for BP Oil Spill Clients Going to Get Sued for Malpractice in Follow-up Class Actions? A Guest Blog Regarding Business Claims By Bob Glasser Explains

It appears that BP and others involved in the current oil spill may be taking their cues from insurance carriers. Insurers have always hedged their bets by saying that they would pay “legitimate claims” after disasters such as Hurricane Katrina and the Northridge Earthquake. This is a brilliant public relations strategy. It allows top executives to go on television and tell the world that the company cares and will do whatever it can to make people whole again. It leaves the general public with a warm and fuzzy feeling of security, even when the insurer has absolutely no intention of promptly and fully paying the full amount of damages owed.

Continue Reading BP Promises To Pay “Legitimate Claims” But Leaves Room For Maneuvering

I have seen this look before. Panic and loss have a certain emotional face where people need compassion and then a plan. Over my only meal of the day late last night, I told my client, Dewey Destin and his wife that I felt proud to be an American and part of the Gulf Coast community because of the way people were responding to very dire circumstances. Fishermen were volunteering and politely demanding that their knowledge of local waters be used to help mitigate the impact of oil. Engineers were suggesting ingenious methods of oil prevention and clean up. Local leaders such as State Senator Don Gaetz and Florida DEP Secretary Mike Sole were candid and helpful with these requests.


Continue Reading Panic Over a Disaster With Little Insurance Coverage

Our firm has been receiving calls from a large number of Florida condominium associations over the past few days regarding the increasing problems associated with the oil spill that is plaguing the gulf coast. I have a personal connection to this growing crisis. I spent a large portion of my life in Destin, Florida, and part of my family still lives and works in the area. Late last night, I flew to the panhandle to see what our firm could do to help.


Continue Reading Florida Condominiums Are Already Feeling the Effect of the Gulf Oil Spill

The Merlin Law Group has been responding to inquiries from potential, current and former clients who have contacted its offices with concerns about the effect of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill on their properties and businesses. These inquiries are wide ranging. Most are asking about preparation issues to prevent damage as well as legal help documenting damage and the law firm’s representation of them for those claims.


Continue Reading Merlin Law Group to Host Oil Spill Town Hall Meeting in Destin on Tuesday

I hate to make doomsday predictions, but there is a possibility that the BP Oil Spill could be worse than any hurricane or catastrophe that I have been involved with. I spent yesterday speaking with others about the current situation. Indeed, my father teaches those in the oil industry how to recover and react to oil spills. Unless the source of the oil is stopped or slows down soon, oil is going to be all over the northern Gulf Coast and Florida. If the spill cannot be contained or slowed in the near future, it will significantly impact our economy.


Continue Reading BP Oil Spill Could Be Worse Than Any Hurricane Damage and Much More Widespread–Even the East Coast of Florida Could Be Impacted

A number of former and current clients have called our offices about the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. They have expressed fear about damages to their business and property, as well as actions that they can take take to protect themselves from the consequences of this disaster. We have already been retained for business losses as customers of clients are cancelling plans for travel to the Gulf Coast. If something does not change soon, this disaster will likely be much worse than most hurricanes. It has the potential to be worse than any of them.


Continue Reading Oil Spill Damages and Claims Will Be Significant

Houston Chronicle reporter, Purva Patel, filed an article, "They Want ‘Profits’ of Ike," noting that Hurricane Ike policyholders who have wrongfully been denied payments for expected costs of general contractor overhead and profit are bringing their actions in class action lawsuits. Our law firm has filed some of these cases with Javier Delgado taking the lead. Javier was noted in the article:


Continue Reading Overhead and Profit Ike Cases in Class Action Status and Gaining Media Attention