BP Claims Could Exceed $20 Billion, Says Fund Chief Feinberg

July 23, 2010

The $20 billion fund set up to help compensate victims of BP Plc’s devastating Gulf of Mexico spill does not prevent future lawsuits against the company that exceed that amount, the fund’s administrator said on Friday.

Kenneth Feinberg, who also oversaw the U.S. bank bailout fund known as TARP, told reporters at a news conference that the BP fund did not represent a cap on legal actions against the firm.

“The notion that the fund is there simply to insulate BP from lawsuits I think is very unfair,” Feinberg said. “There will be an opportunity at some point for an eligible claimant to decide to take subsequent funds in return for releasing BP from suit.”

(Reporting by Pedro Nicolaci da Costa; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)

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