McCollum: Careful with BP Claims, Talk to Lawyer

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Outgoing Attorney General Bill McCollum is advising Florida residents considering taking final payments from BP for oil spill damage to proceed with caution and talk to a lawyer.

Gulf Coast Claims Administrator Kenneth Feinberg has announced three payment options for those going through the federal claims administrator’s process: an interim payment, a final payment or a quick payment. Those taking final payments and quick payments would have to sign a release barring them from getting any future damages from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

“I urge all Floridians to proceed with caution when evaluating whether to accept an offer of final payment from BP,” McCollum said in a statement released Friday. “I encourage consumers to consult with their counsel before signing any release.” McCollum said that claimants considering a quick final payment should also evaluate whether their total possible damages exceed the set amount offered for such claims - $5,000 for individuals or $25,000 for businesses.

“Due to the speculative nature of estimating a final claims value and the breadth of the GCCF release, claimants are advised against accepting any form of final payment or signing a release without first thoroughly understanding the GCCF’s terms,” McCollum said.


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