Jim hood continues attack on BP claims process

JACKSON, Mississippi — Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood said he is pleased that the U.S. Department of Justice has asked for an outside audit of BP oil spill claims processing, but that his office plans to continue its own investigation of the Gulf Coast Claims Facility (GCCF).

New York-based BDO Consulting received a letter this week from U.S. Associate Attorney General Thomas Perelli saying that his office has gotten complaints about the handling of claims documents, unnecessary delays in processing claims, and inconsistent payments among claimants in similar situations.

Hood has had the same criticism since shortly after Ken Feinberg was tapped by BP PLC to distribute some $20 billion among more than 1 million claimants.

Hood has consistently said the process is arbitrary and murky, and in July filed suit in Hinds County Chancery Court to gain access to the files.

Feinberg, a Washington lawyer, countered by saying he wanted a federal court to preside over the Mississippi lawsuit, contending the federal government has jurisdiction since the Deepwater Horizon spill originated on the outer continental shelf.

Mississippi Press
12/22/11