- Many registrants did not fully complete their request form, so the Special Master has required the claims administrator to contact all registrants who had information missing.
- Registrants will have 10 days from the date they are notified to provide the specified missing information, which will be needed to complete registration.
- Registrants are required to provide their full name, full address, date of birth, and/or Social Security number.
- Click here to read the Special Master’s directive.
Michigan residents reached a $641 million settlement to aid those affected by the Flint water crisis, and the settlement website is open for registration.
Although the settlement website is live, it is not accepting claims at this time. In order to be able to file a claim, Class Members must first complete and submit a registration form by March 29, 2021. More information on the registration and claims filing process is available on the settlement website’s FAQ page.
The Flint water crisis settlement will benefit many populations in Flint, with the majority of the funds directed to children who are or were minors when they were first exposed to the lead-contaminated water. Of the 79.5% of the settlement fund spent on minors, 64.5% will be directed to children under the age of 7, 10% will benefit children ages seven to 11, and 5% will benefit children ages 12 to 17. An additional 2% of the total settlement fund will be used to benefit children’s programs in Flint.
Roughly 18% of the total settlement fund will be used to benefit adults and claims of property damage. The remaining 0.5% of the settlement claims fund will be used to compensate business losses.
“As I’ve said before, what happened in Flint should have never happened, and financial compensation with this settlement is just one of the many ways we will continue to show our support for the city of Flint and its families,” Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement.
“We will also continue working, to help the community heal and move forward, toward the brighter future that the people of Flint deserve.”
When the settlement was announced in August, the total benefits amounted to $600 million. However, since then, three defendants have joined and raised the total settlement amount to $641 million.
Now, the city of Flint, McLaren Regional Medical Center, and Rowe Professional Services have joined state officials in settling the Flint water crisis lawsuit. Further claims are pending against other defendants such as two engineering companies, Veolia North America and Lockwood Andrews & Newnam Inc., and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Before these settlement amounts are used to benefit Flint water crisis claimants, the court must approve the settlement. Following preliminary approval, the public will be able to review the settlement over the course of several months, after which they can object or register for the settlement compensation.
After this process, the court must rule that the settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate in a final approval hearing. This determination will depend in part on how many eligible settlement Class Members choose to participate in the settlement versus how many objections are filed.
Flint residents who wish to remain updated on the settlement proceedings can register for updates on the settlement website.
The Flint water crisis class action lawsuit was initially filed in March 2016 by seven families affected by the issue. According to these plaintiffs, government officials have known since 2014 that the water supply in Flint contained dangerous levels of lead – a toxic substance.
However, despite knowing about the lead in the water, Michigan officials allegedly allowed the community to drink the dangerous water.
Due to a lack of warning from Flint officials, plaintiffs like Tiesha Tipton and her family allegedly continued to use the city water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and cleaning. Now, due to long-term exposure to lead-contaminated water, Tipton and her four children allegedly have heightened levels of lead in their bodies – giving them a “justifiable and actual fear of developing cancer.”
More recently in July, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that the Flint water crisis class action lawsuit could move forward with the allegations. The defendants in the case had tried to dismiss the allegations, arguing that the plaintiffs failed to “provide timely notice” and insufficiently argued their claims.
The Court of Claims partially dismissed some of the plaintiffs claims, but allowed others to move forward. Later, the Court of Appeals upheld this decision, prompting the defendants to appeal the case to the Michigan Supreme Court.
In the appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court, Assistant Attorney General Nate Gambill argued that “[t]here is no policy maker who authorized or mandated that low-level staffers go out and expose the plaintiffs to toxic water.”
However, in a four-to-two ruling, the Michigan Supreme Court sided with the Flint plaintiffs.
Were you or your family affected by lead-contaminated water, in Flint or elsewhere? Let us know in the comment section below.
The plaintiffs and settlement Class Members are represented by Julie H. Hurwitz and William H. Goodman of Goodman Hurwitz & James PC; Paul F. Novak and Gregory Stamatopoulos of Weitz & Luxenberg PC; and Beth M. Rivers, Michael L. Pitt and Cary S. McGehee of Pitt McGehee Palmer & Rivers PC.
The Flint Water Crisis Class Action Lawsuit is Melissa Mays, et al. v. Governor of Michigan, et al., Case No. 157420-2, in Michigan Supreme Court.
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Please note: Top Class Actions is not a settlement administrator or law firm. Top Class Actions is a legal news source that reports on class action lawsuits, class action settlements, drug injury lawsuits and product liability lawsuits. Top Class Actions does not process claims and we cannot advise you on the status of any class action settlement claim. You must contact the settlement administrator or your attorney for any updates regarding your claim status, claim form or questions about when payments are expected to be mailed out.