Businesses won't have to return BP spill payouts

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A federal judge has ruled BP must stand by the agreement made with the companies it compensated for losses after the 2010 Gulf oil spill despite the oil giant saying some claims were overestimated.

BP argued that a flawed funding formula enabled nearly 800 businesses to overestimate their spill-related claims.

BP says one construction company hundreds of miles from the coast received $13.2 million, but deserved $4.8 million at most. BP said another company selling "animals and animal skins" was overpaid about $14 million, and about 50 others shouldn't have been paid at all.

Attorney Kevin Downey argued that about 150 claimants should return a total of $185 million.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier wasn't persuaded Wednesday, thwarting BP's latest attempt to control potential liabilities now approaching $50 billion.