ORANGE BEACH, Alabama – Charter Captain Seth Wilson hasn’t seen a check from BP since early June. That’s in spite of calling his claims adjuster everyday, which he describes as rude, and who even questioned the validity of his charter fishing boat.
He’s not alone. Many of these Charter Fishermen are in the same boat. Wilson says he’s had to submit his income tax returns to BP nine times. They keep losing them. Wilson believes that’s a convenient way of stalling the compensation process until Kenneth Feinberg takes over on August 23rd.
But Wilson doesn’t have much hope that things will be any better then. At least, he doesn’t want to get his hopes up.
BP has said it hasn’t denied any claims. However, the company hasn’t exactly processed all the claims that have been made. Along the entire Gulf Coast there have reportedly been some 148 thousand claims filed. Of those, some 40 thousand have not been paid. But Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood reports that of the 9600 claims filed in his state, 6050, or two-thirds, have not bee processed or paid.
Even if the calls to book a charter fishing trip were to start again, Wilson and others are hamstrung: federal waters are still closed to fishing. He says a great first step would be to open those waters–a first step to ‘getting his life back.’