In a court filing on January 12, the Department of Justice challenged the decision by U.S. District Court Judge Carl Barbier to set aside six percent of all claims payments made by the GCCF after December 30.  The money set aside would be held in escrow to fund expenses of trial lawyers affiliated with the plaintiff’s steering committee in litigation against BP PLC.  The Justice Department argued that the 6% holdback discourages people from settling claims with BP outside the courtroom, and that Judge Barbier’s ruling goes against the intent of the Oil Pollution Act.

SSA will continue to monitor these proceedings and will post updates as we become aware of them.