A settlement in the amount of $626 million was awarded to tens of thousands of victims of the lead water crisis in Flint, Michigan on November 10, 2021. The award follows the preliminary approval of a partial settlement agreement in January, 2021, which did not resolve all the cases brough by Flint residents and permitted victims to pursue compensation individually. Now U.S. District Judge Judith Levy has approved a settlement that provides a systematic and comprehensive payout plan for those injured by Flint’s contaminated water supply whether they were included in the class action lawsuit or personally initiated a lawsuit. Payments will be distributed to plaintiffs who were children at the time of exposure, adults who can demonstrate that their illness was caused by lead contamination, and certain businesses. Children who have been injured by Flint’s water will receive most of the settlement money. The settlement is the largest in the state’s history.
Levy Konigsberg LLP has spearheaded the litigation against defendants in the Flint Water cases. Corey Stern, a partner at Levy Konigsberg, was appointed lead counsel since the first bellwether trials on behalf of Flint residents who suffered injuries from exposure to lead contaminated water. Mr. Stern, who has advocated for the rights of each child affected by lead poisoning in Flint, has represented over 2,600 children. As lead counsel in the state litigation and co-liaison counsel on federal litigation, Mr. Stern led settlement negotiations with state officials which resulted in a $600 million settlement in August, 2020. That settlement ensured that nearly 80% of the funds would be distributed to minors, with the largest share going to children under the age of six at the time of exposure.
The crisis in Flint, Michigan began in April. 2014 when city officials in Flint, Michigan decided to draw public water from the Flint River rather than Lake Huron to temporarily save money. However, city officials failed to properly treat the water. The lead-contaminated water immediately caused health problems, including rashes and hair loss, for many of Flint’s 100,000 residents. Despite reports of serious health conditions, officials insisted that that the water was safe for use and consumption and did not move swiftly to address the problem. Former Governor Rick Snyder’s administration first acknowledged the issue in September, 2015 after doctors detected high levels of lead in the blood of children who resided in Flint. Lead poisoning in children has serious, long-term effects on their health including the risks of impaired cognition, behavioral disorders, delayed growth and development, learning issues, and hearing and speech disorders. Scientists agree that there is no level of lead that is safe and that many of the injuries suffered by these children are likely to be permanent and lifelong.
The attorneys at Levy Konigsberg LLP have decades of experience advocating for clients who have been harmed by lead poisoning and contamination in water and other sources. We can help you obtain the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Please contact our lawyers for a free and confidential consultation by calling 1-800-988-8005 or submitting an email inquiry above.