I’ve received another message from the guy whose thoughts I had passed along in an earlier post about why BP has attempted to crawfish from its agreement with the people and businesses of the Gulf. This time, he poses a straightforward question that BP should answer:
After its “en banc” petition for rehearing was rejected by the 5th Circuit last week, BP continued to argue its case in the “court of public opinion,” even as it moves the dispute to the next level in the “court of law.” The problem is, BP has taken conflicting positions in those two “courts.”
To recap, for the past year BP has been trying to revisit the “causation” aspect of a two year old class settlement deal that it had painstakingly negotiated and then successfully urged the trial court to approve. Now, BP has asked the 5th Circuit to extend the expiring Order that bars payment of ANY “Business Economic Loss” (BEL) claims while it takes its crusade to the US Supreme Court.
As “courts of law” consider these requests, BP should be asked to explain which of the following two descriptions of its “causation” position is a lie:
“No company would agree to pay for losses that it did not cause, and BP certainly did not when it entered into this settlement.” (From BP’s public relations website and its corporate spokesman, Senior VP of Communications and External Affairs Geoff Morrell.)
“This is a settlement. … It was a compromise, which every settlement agreement is. With respect to causation issues, some businesses that are very close to the spill, the causation issue is waived entirely. . . .” (From BP’s lawyer, former United States Solicitor General Theodore Olson, in open court on July 8, 2013 during exchange with Judge Edith Clement beginning about 6:33.)
BP has done an amazing job recasting itself as the victim, but if it can’t square those two positions, then BP is — at best — a liar seeking protection from thieves.
While I don’t agree with my correspondent’s second characterization, it is more and more difficult to disagree with his first.
So, BP — A or B?
Which one is it?
J. R. Whaley understands the law and how to get results in litigation. His reputation for quality and results means you can trust him to get the best results for your case. In addition to complex litigation cases, J. R. also has years of experience working on serious personal injury cases including death, financial injury cases and disputes between insurance companies and their policy holders.