BP loses court appeal over 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill compensation claims

Chris Papadopoullos
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An explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig killed 11 and led to a huge oil leak

Oil giant BP had its legal challenge of a settlement deal over the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill turned down by the US Supreme Court yesterday.

The company’s share price dropped by 1.7 per cent to 417.3p after the ruling.

BP agreed to the deal in 2012 which looks to pay compensation to firms and individuals affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. But the company believes the agreement has been misinterpreted.

“We nevertheless remain concerned that the program has made awards to claimants that suffered no injury from the spill – and that the lawyers for these claimants have unjustly profited as a result,” Geoff Morrell, BP America’s vice president of US communications and external affairs said in a statement.

“On behalf of all our stakeholders, we will therefore continue to advocate for the investigation of suspicious or implausible claims and to fight fraud where it is uncovered.”

The total settlement cost to BP now looks set to be much higher than the $7.8bn (£5bn) originally estimated by the firm.

The agreement has no cap.

“Today’s ruling is a huge victory for the Gulf, and should finally put to rest BP’s two-year attack on its own settlement,” the chief plaintiff attorneys Stephen Herman and James Roy said in a statement yesterday.

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