The processing of medical claims in the BP settlement has also picked up considerably since the Medical Claims Facility began accepting claims on Feb. 12, 2014. Claims Administrator Matthew Garreston received 37,281 claims before the filing deadline of Feb. 12, 2015. As of September, $40.2 million was allotted for compensation to 12,881 claimants:
• Almost $15 million has been awarded to A1 claimants who could not document their claims with medical records.
• Nearly $11.4 million has been awarded to A2 claimants who did substantiate their claims with medical records showing they suffered from an enumerated specified physical condition.
• More than $12.4 million has been allocated to A3 cleanup workers who were documented in BP’s own medical database as suffering from certain medical conditions.
• $710,000 has been awarded to A4 cleanup workers who suffered from heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke while working in the cleanup operations.
• $765,350 has been reserved for B1 claimants who suffer from an ongoing, chronic specified physical condition. Due to their value, these claims are the most scrutinized in the entire process.
In addition to upfront compensation for specified physical conditions that have manifested between April 20, 2010, and April 16, 2012, the Medical Benefits Settlement Agreement provides for class members to participate in the Periodic Medical Consultation Program. This includes a comprehensive medical evaluation for class members every three years over the course of 21 years. Its purpose is to screen class members for any medical issues that may manifest in the future. To date, the Claims Administrator approved 3,418 claims for participation and scheduled 216 physicians visits.
The Medical Benefits Settlement also allows for class members to sue BP for a medical condition that manifests after the settlement was reached on April 16, 2012. Thus far, 399 claimants have exercised this Back-End Litigation Option and filed their Intent to Sue BP with the court and proceed in traditional litigation. If you need additional information, contact Ryan Kral, a lawyer in our Toxic Torts Section, at 800-898-2034 or by email at Ryan.Kral@beasleyallen.com.