Spill attorneys encourage clients to opt out of class action suit
Two leading attorneys for plaintiffs in the BP oil spill case plan to recommend that their thousands of clients drop out of the class action settlement and try their luck in court, The Houston Chronicle reports. Tony Buzbee, a Houston-based attorney representing more than 12,000 individual plaintiffs, says he plans to advise these clients they can get a better deal than the proposed settlement negotiated by BP and the Plaintiffs' Steering Committee, a group of attorneys appointed by the federal court to represent individual plaintiffs. New Orleans attorney Stuart Smith, who represents several thousand clients, says he is considering recommending that his clients decline the settlement. The settlement was negotiated for an estimated $7.8 billion to cover claims of individuals and businesses in the Gulf Coast region in the wake of the 2010 disaster. It still needs to be approved by a federal court after a fairness hearing scheduled for Nov. 8. Plaintiffs who want to opt out must inform the court by Nov. 1 that they don't want to be included in the class action settlement. More details are available in the full story here.
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