CRESSKILL, N.J., Jan. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A settlement between BP and the U.S. Department of Justice is near for all civil and criminal charges related to the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion and Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Estimated at between $20 billion and $25 billion, it will be the second largest settlement in U.S. history. The BP oil spill is considered to be the second worst environmental disaster in the nation's history, second only to the 1920s Dust Bowl.
The settlement is expected between February 7th (when BP releases its year-end results) and February 27th (the scheduled start of legal hearings in New Orleans). It will be months, if not years, before lawyers and plaintiffs receive compensation. However, once settlement amounts are finalized, litigation funding can be obtained immediately from RD Legal Funding, one of the nation's leading providers of plaintiff and attorney post-settlement funding.
About 4.9 million barrels of oil flowed into the Gulf of Mexico from April 20th, 2010, when the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded, until the resulting sea-floor gusher was capped on July 15th, 2010. Eleven rig workers were killed and 17 more injured. Immeasurable damage was done to marine and wildlife habitats, as well as the Gulf's fishing and tourism industries.
The National Resources Defense Council reports that about 1,000 miles of shoreline were affected. Two thousand square miles of Louisiana's coastal wetlands have been lost. An enormous dead zone remains off the mouth of the Mississippi River.
In January 2011 the presidentially appointed National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling released its report blaming BP and its partners for its cost-cutting decisions and the lack of a system to ensure well safety. After an internal review, BP admitted culpability in the disaster and established a $20 billion fund to compensate oil spill victims. As of July 2011 the fund had paid $4.7 billion to 198,475 claimants, although nearly one million claims had been received with thousands more being made each week.
Attorneys representing plaintiffs in the BP Oil Spill Litigation, as well as plaintiffs themselves, should contact RD Legal Funding at 1-800-565-5177 for more information about immediate settlement financing.