BP Gulf Coast Lawsuit Settlement Approved

Gulf Coast businesses may see an end to their Deepwater Horizon legal battle.

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Support ships try to quell Deepwater Horizon's spreading fires. (Joe Raedle/Getty)

As a result of the disastrous BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, a U.S. District Judge in Louisiana has approved a class action settlement between the company and affected local businesses, reports CNN. This follows Attorney General Eric Holder's announcement in November that the oil company will plead guilty to manslaughter charges based on the explosion and the spill and will pay government penalties of $4.5 billion.

BP will pay $2.3 billion to commercial fishermen, seafood boat captains and crew, seafood vessel owners and oyster leaseholders.

The money represents "approximately five times the annual average industry gross revenue for 2007 to 2009 of the seafood industry in the region covered by the settlement agreement." It also "represents 19.2 times lost industry revenue in 2010," the ruling said.

The ruling notes that "the settlement program is processing claims in an "impressive fashion." By last month, 4,500 claims were processed per work.

BP said it is pleased the court approved the settlement "resolving the substantial majority of legitimate economic loss and property damage claims stemming from the Deepwater Horizon accident."

Read more at CNN.

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