Barbier would set any award for the attorneys. BP isn't contesting the request.
BP also has agreed to pay an additional $57 million to promote the Gulf Coast tourism and seafood industries and spend up to $5 million on a publicity campaign to inform Gulf Coast residents how to participate in the settlement.
The April 20, 2010, blowout of BP's Macondo well triggered an explosion that killed 11 rig workers and unleashed a gusher that spewed more than 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf.
In the aftermath, BP created a $20 billion fund to compensate commercial fishermen, property owners, hotels and other tourism-driven businesses that claimed they suffered economic damages.
The Gulf Coast Claims Facility processed more than 221,000 claims and paid out more than $6 billion from the fund before a court-supervised administrator took over March 8. The administrator, Patrick Juneau, announced last week that 5,238 claimants have been paid more than $134 million during the transition period as of April 6.
The settlement excludes certain types of businesses, including financial institutions, casinos and racetracks, as well as losses allegedly caused by the federal government's temporary moratorium on deepwater drilling.
Brent Coon, an attorney who represents roughly 15,000 clients with spill-related claims but wasn't involved in the settlement negotiations, said the proposal's formula for compensating many plaintiffs appears to be more generous than the GCCF's. Some categories of plaintiffs may be better off opting out, but they face a long wait for a trial date, he said.
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