Preparing or filing BP interim claims by fishermen with the GCCF is one possible step over the next 3 years. Others include submitting a final claim, filing a claim with the Coast Guard under the OPA, or litigation filed in appropriate courts.
Although the BP Emergency Claim deadline passed on November 23, 2010, individuals and businesses in the seafood industry may still file interim and final claims for damages with the Gulf Coast Claims Facility ["GCCF"], established after the BP Oil Spill. These fishing or seafood industry claims should be undertaken with an understanding of alternative routes to recovery from filing litigation and a filing with the Coast Guard under the OPA.
Filing and settling interim or final claims with the GCCF, by the seafood industry, should be undertaken with a diligent analysis and review of the businesses specific operations and books. Most businesses connected with the gulf seafood industry (including fishing boats, bait shops, charters, seafood processors and wholesale operations) have cyclical costs and income over weekly or annual periods. This is true for other businesses, such hotels, motels and other tourist related operations.
The analysis of a wholesale seafood business, whether over-the-water fishing vessels, vessels for charter, or dockside operations or processors, requires attention to both the business cycle and the capital outlays. Demonstrating and projecting sales but-for the BP spill, and income losses and damages due to the BP spill, should be undertaken with the assistance of both legal counsel, and competent insurance loss professionals.
Though fishing vessels and dockside seafood wholesalers or seafood processors have common business structures and operations, each operator and owner will have unique elements that distinguish it from the competition. While there are common tools for projecting income and analyzing losses, each review is unique, and should depend on the specifics of the business operation. Choose wisely when you seek help on how to file a claim for lost income.
And while retail operations may have similar concerns, those that focus on a narrow consumer need a particularly vulnerable to market upset. For example, bait shops have a narrow dependency on tourism and the recreational fisherman, and the oil spill drove them both away. With the return of tourism, an interest in fishing may have lagged, while a souvenir shop may have a limited recovery. Ice houses, marine fuel suppliers and others each have unique profiles, from the spill and recovery work. Those that prepare claims must review these an other issues to fully qualify commercial damages.
As with any fire, flood or other loss event, "how to" is founded on preparation and the advice you get. Here are some initial steps:
JohnRuskin (at) ComplianceOfficer (dot) Com
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