One Man’s Struggle With the Gulf Oil Spill Claims Process
TWI has been following the Gulf oil spill claims process for months now. Though things seem to be improving at the Gulf Coast Claims Facility, frustration still abounds, as I reported this morning.
This is Zade Marcrie’s story. Marcrie owns a fishing charter business in Little Sarasota Bay, Fla. In an email to me, Marcrie told me about his struggle with the claims process:
I filed with BP and they just kept asking for more documentation but the person with my file did talk to me. Since re-filing with GCCF on 8/25 I’ve only been able to talk to people with generic answers. I call them the Placaters.
My claim has been Under Review since around 8/28, but initially I applied for a Final Payment. It took two weeks to find out only Emergency Payment claims were being reviewed. I spoke with a Placater and asked if I should go ahead and file for an Emergency Payment. He said I’d have to start over with a new application and my initial claim for Final Payment would be voided.
A week later I received a letter from GCCF asking if I was sure I didn’t want to file for an emergency payment. It said all I had to do was email, mail or fax them my intention to receive an EP. I did and was told, by a Placater, they not only received my email, but I had been put in an expedited queue. A week later I received an email asking if I wanted to file for an EP. … I was frustrated, but I replied that I did want an EP. The next week I received an email stating they had received my request. I called and a Placater said my claim for EP had been in an expedited queue for two weeks.
Its obvious the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. … [W]hen you consider how much better off myself and untold numbers of others would be had our claims been handled within a week its actually pathetic.
What’s more frustrating are rumors about the claims reps being inexperienced people with backgrounds in any and every field other than claims and/or accounting or finance.
For now all I can do is keep checking my status online.
The above has been edited for clarity.
If you are having problems with your oil spill claim, email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.