BP paying business interruption claims in Mississippi - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

BP paying business interruption claims in Mississippi

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

By Danielle Thomas – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - BP officials say easing the economic burdens created by the oil spill is the right thing to do. A spokesperson said so far in Mississippi alone, the company has paid more than $550,000 to businesses and individuals losing money because of the oil in the Gulf. 

Right now, the Queen Elizabeth I should be out shrimping in international waters. Instead, she's docked in Biloxi. Her captain, Rick Van Cao, said the money is not coming in, but the expenses continue.

"I'm so worried how to catch up with bills right now," said Van Cao. "Pay for notes on the boat and pay for the house payment."

BP officials have issued payments to 1,004 Mississippians struggling make ends meet since the oil spill.

"There are a variety of businesses as well as individuals who can go through the claims process," said BP Spokesperson Andrew Van Chau. "We're hearing from fishermen. We're hearing from folks who are involved in tourism industry, restaurant business. That kind of background where they have seen some type of impact from business interruption or other impact."

Claimants whose documentation can be verified may receive compensation payments of up to $5,000. Charter Boat Captain Tom Becker went to the Biloxi claim center. He said the money won't make anyone whole, but will help.

"They're going it the right way and I hope it works out for everybody," said Becker. "We just wish we weren't doing this. All the captains that are coming out here, they're in here today, always the same. They'd rather be out on that water fishing."

Van Cao said he's filed a claim and is waiting for a check from BP.  With a $7,000 a month boat note, he's said the bank is not willing to wait, and his home is his collateral.

"If a couple months from I don't have income, I'll be bad," said Van Cao.

If you have suffered an economic loss from the oil spill, you are asked to call the BP business interruption line at 1-800-440-0858. BP officials stress you must first call to receive a claim number that you can then use at a claim center.

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