Gulf spill fund gets flood of last-minute claims

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The administrator of a $20 billion fund set up to pay for damages from the Gulf oil spill says he received a flood of last-minute emergency claims before a key deadline ended.

Kenneth Feinberg said Wednesday that most of those claims likely will be denied because there was not enough documentation to support them.

Feinberg says about 450,000 emergency claims were filed by Tuesday’s deadline. Of those, about 30,000 were filed Monday or later.

Also on Wednesday, Feinberg discussed the next phase of the claims process.

People and businesses will be able to ask for a lump sum payment, so long as they agree not to sue BP PLC or other companies involved in the spill. They can also ask for smaller payments every three months, which leaves open the possibility of suing the oil giant for damages.