A $600 Million settlement with the State of Michigan and other defendents over the Flint water crisis will establish a court-monitored victims compensation fund that will provide direct payments to Flint residents.
Nearly 80% of the money will go to victims who were under age 18 at the time of the crisis.
In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency said it had found dangerous levels of lead — which can affect the heart, kidneys and nerves — in the water flowing into residents’ homes.
“This partial settlement is the result of 5 years of litigation and 18 months of court supervised negotiations. Interim Co-lead Counsel will continue to pursue claims against the remaining defendants on behalf of certain residents and local businesses in the City of Flint harmed by the water crisis,” the release states.
Besides the State of Michigan, the settlement includes the Department of Environmental Quality and former Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, as well as other individual defendents. Litigation is to continue against other defendants, including two private engineering firms charged with professional negligence.
The Supreme Court this year said it wouldn’t block a lawsuit by Flint residents seeking to hold city officials accountable. Lawyers for the city had asked justices to step in, saying their clients had immunity from such lawsuits. A previous ruling from a federal appeals court also sided with the residents.