Appeals court won't rehear BP settlement issue

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Associated Press

Posted on May 19, 2014 at 9:05 PM

Updated Monday, May 19 at 10:02 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A federal appeals court has refused to reconsider its previous ruling that businesses don't have to prove they were directly harmed by BP's 2010 Gulf Of Mexico oil spill to collect settlement payments.

Monday's decision by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals could be a step toward resuming a claims process that was suspended after the courts' first decision in March. BP spokesman Geoff Morrell said in an emailed statement Monday night that the company is considering its legal options.

BP had asked the full 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans to rehear the case after a three-judge panel's March ruling. The court voted 8-5 against a rehearing.

The action preserves a district court ruling that BP had agreed in 2012 to pay claims without requiring proof that losses were directly caused by the spill.

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