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AG Nessel Urges Flint Residents to File Claims Following Latest Ruling
February 04, 2022
LANSING - Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel released the following statement after Judge Judith E. Levy issued her ruling on the plaintiffs' motion for attorneys' fees and expenses relating to the Flint water civil settlement:
"The Court's latest order puts us one step closer to being able to provide monetary relief to those who have endured unimaginable hardship. I continue to encourage registrants to review the latest information to best understand how to file their claim. I remain steadfast in my commitment to address the damage created by the Flint Water Crisis in court."
As previously announced last year, the settlement agreement prohibits the State from taking a position on plaintiffs' application for attorney fees and expenses unless the Court itself requests it. Judge Levy did not request the State's input.
The claims period for the settlement opened earlier this month. The claims administrator has established a telephone help line that registrants can call for assistance in any aspect of the claims process. That telephone number is 800-493-1754.
The period allows individuals who have previously registered to participate in the settlement to submit their claims forms and related materials either online or through the mail. In general, however, claimants are encouraged to file online, if possible, to assist with processing.
Detailed information will continue to be available on the claims administrator website.
The deadline for submitting claims is May 12, 2022.
ADDITIONAL SETTLEMENT BACKGROUND
The historic settlement was formally approved in November. A breakdown of contributing defendants is as follows:
- State of Michigan, $600 million;
- City of Flint, $20 million through its insurer;
- McLaren Regional Medical Center, $5 million; and
- Rowe Professional Services Co., $1.25 million.
Judge Levy gave preliminary approval to the settlement last January, which established the process through which Flint residents could indicate their intention to file eligible settlement claims that will be processed and paid by the claims administrator.
During the settlement's three-day fairness hearing in July, Judge Levy listened to arguments and objections to determine whether the settlement is fair, adequate and reasonable.
The agreement specified that about 80% of the net settlement fund will be spent on claims of children who were minors when first exposed to the Flint River water, with a large majority of that amount to be paid for claims of children age six and younger, and earmarking 2% to go to special education services in Genesee County. Another 18% of the net settlement funds are to be spent on claims of adults and for property damage. Roughly 1% will go toward claims for business losses.
The amount of money to be paid to individual claimants won't be determined until the claims process ends as it depends, in part, on the number of claims submitted and found to be eligible.