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The Yau Law Firm
Focused on Protecting Businesses and Representing the Injured

BP Announces Deadline for Filing Oil Spill Claims

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BP announced today that August 28 will be the last day that they will be accepting claims for loss of income, personal illness or injury, property damage, and other harms caused by the April oil spill.  This announcement came swiftly and with shocking modesty.  Consider the prime time run of BP’s TV and radio ads, where they pledge with hats in hand that their claims centers are always available to right the wrongs.

Since that deadline is a week away, it has my phone ringing off the hook.  Panicked people are asking the same question:  “How can I ever get my BP claim filed on time?!”

Unfortunately, a proper claim will take more than a week to prepare.  I wanted to get to the bottom of this, so I called the claims center, and asked:  “Are you going to deny my claim if I don’t get it filed by next week?”

I was mildly amused to find that the claims center didn’t really know what I was talking about.  After putting me on hold several times, the ultimate answer was, “I’m sorry, but I can’t comment on the deadline, and I don’t have any further information at this time.”

This deadline is totally bogus.  I think they’re imposing this deadline to dupe legitimate claimants into believing that they can no longer file a claim.  The truth is that the Oil Pollution Act provides for a 3 year Statute of Limitations on oil spill related claims.

BP’s move in imposing a random deadline is really slick.  It’s a subtle signal that they’re going to make claims processing a much more difficult process.  I teach a seminar on how to submit a better BP Claims package.

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