Despite the fact that it received $430 million from its insurance company, Transocean today announced to its shareholders that it intends to seek to limit its liability to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and sinking to only $27 million.
This effort by Transocean comes despite the fact that, less than two weeks ago, Transocean received a payment of $430 million from its insurer as an initial payment for Transocean's losses due to the explosion.
Today, Tony Buzbee, a highly regarded attorney and former Marine, announced his intentions to fight this attempt on behalf of his clients who were injured during the Deepwater Horizon explosion. "This is dispecable. Transocean receives $430 million, but now wants a court to limit the amount it has to pay out to eleven grieving families, and many injured workers, to only $27 million--total? This isn't right, its immoral, and I will spend whatever it takes, and will put as many lawyers as it takes on this until I beat Transocean."
Buzbee, who has sued Transocean repeatedly over the years, has committed millions in the effort to fight BP, Transocean, and the army of lawyers representing them. Buzbee resolved a case for $15 million against Transocean several years back on behalf of a group of offshore drilling workers. Transocean's contribution to the settlement was a fraction of the $75 million paid to Buzbee's clients by the drilling contractors.
"The first step is to challenge the paperwork filed by Transocean today. After that, I will ask the Court to allow me to question the Transocean executives, including the CEO. I want him to look me and my clients in the eye and make this ridiculous argument. My clients who worked for Transocean are very loyal people. They have given a large part of their lives to this company. Transocean has gone out of its way in the press to pretend it is loyal back to these employees--now we see that Transocean cares about only one thing--the almighty dollar. This effort is a stick in the eye to my clients, and not only on behalf of my clients, but on behalf of all injured on that rig, I will bring my forces to bear to prevent and defeat this."
Transocean's case was filed today in Houston Federal Court. Judge Keith Ellison was assigned the case.
May 13, 2010