The almost 4-year long court battle surrounding the BP Oil Spill seems to have taken a turn for the worst for BP. Last week, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana determined the London-based company’s gross negligence and willful misconduct led to millions of gallons of oil being spilled into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. This means BP could face “enhanced civil penalties” under the Clean Water Act – which nearly quadruples if a discharge of oil results from gross negligence or willful misconduct.


Continue Reading Federal Judge Finds “Reckless” and “Grossly Negligent” Conduct By BP Led to 2010 Oil Spill

When Kenneth Feinberg set up the protocol for distributing the funds to oil spill victims, he wrongly included geographic proximity as a consideration. This consideration directly conflicted with the Oil Protection Act, and many claims submitted by Florida businesses impacted by the oil spill were wrongfully denied. Thanks to Alex Sink, Charlie Crist, and Bill McCollum, geographic proximity is no longer a determining factor.


Continue Reading Florida Businesses Denied By the Gulf Coast Claims Facility Have New Hope

The best way to ignore or cover up improper and incompetent claims practice activity would be to ask only the guilty party, right? That is exactly what Louisiana Insurance Commissioner James Donelon and Risk & Insurance appear to have done. It seems that Donelon is not only in bed with the insurance industry, but also with the BP oil spill claims adjusters. Everybody in the business knows that most BP oil spill adjusters need a great deal of accounting help, which they are not getting.


Continue Reading Louisiana Insurance Commissioner and Risk & Insurance White Wash Poor BP Oil Spill Claims Handling

A paper, "Understanding Valuation Issues of Gulf Oil Spill Claims," will be delivered by me in Atlanta on Thursday. For those interested in the business interruption and lost income coverage disputes that Michelle Claverol writes about on this blog every Sunday morning, you’ll love the paper. For those of you that simply want to know how to properly present the vast majority of all claims so they will get paid quickly by BP, you will enjoy the PowerPoint presentation I will cover in 12 minutes. I should probably advertise this speech as "how any attorney can make a lot of money by following these simple directions" and fill the room with my colleagues.


Continue Reading Understanding Valuation Issues of Gulf Oil Spill Claims

The oil spill attorneys advertising for a mass of clients and recent advertisements in Texas regarding Hurricane Ike claims, seem to indicate that all my colleagues always win, and win big. Nothing could be further from the truth. The truth is that if you are going to trial or push for what should fully be paid, at least one party to the litigation will lose and, sometimes, lose after a lot of money is offered to settle. Everybody loves to talk about their wins. Losses happen, and I am reminded of that bitterness and horrible feeling of injustice every now and then.


Continue Reading Policyholders Do Not Always Win or Settle for Big Bucks

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Lenny Kravitz, Mos Def, Trombone Shorty, and Tim Robbins recorded a version of The New Orleans Mardi Gras classic, It Ain’t My Fault, by Joseph Smokey Johnson and Wardell Joseph Quezergue, updating some of the lyrics for the Gulf Aid concert:

Continue Reading A Thoroughly Enjoyable and Inexpensive Way to Help Those Injured By the Oil Spill

Could there be a worse time to have a hurricane or tropical storm than the summer and fall of 2010? Given the extraordinary warmth of water this early in the hurricane season and the ongoing BP oil spill catastrophe, policyholders and public officials need to start taking immediate steps to prepare for two catastrophes which are greater than their sum. Jeff Masters, of WunderBlog, is discussing the possibility that a tropical depression is currently forming in the Atlantic. Those in the Gulf Coast have one eye out for the increasing probability of a hurricane while also watching for the spread of oil.


Continue Reading Oil and Hurricanes: Here Comes the One Two Punch

The proper determination of more significant oil spill commercial lost profit and earning capacity claims must be approached very similarly to business interruption catastrophe claims. The best approach for larger or more complex claims is through a team of specialists. A business client can only be properly represented and fully indemnified through a collegial debate and analysis developing the proper assessment of the business, the circumstances resulting from the catastrophe, the amount of the loss, and legal considerations of what the law will allow and require as proof, if challenged.


Continue Reading Oil Spill Accounting and Damages: The Team Approach to Determine Business Interruption Claims