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Settlements from chemical spill not ready to be paid out

A lawyer for West Virginia residents affected by a 2014 chemical spill says they will not receive settlements until a judge's final approval, and administrators finish processing the more than 95,000 claims. (WCHS/WVAH)

A lawyer for West Virginia residents affected by a 2014 chemical spill said they will not receive settlements until a judge's final approval, and administrators finish processing the more than 95,000 claims.

Attorney Anthony Majestro told The Charleston Gazette-Mail no one will be paid without U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver's order.

The $151 million class-action settlement covered anyone who may have received tap water from West Virginia American Water Company's Elk River intake plant or businesses that suffered from the spill at Freedom Industries. An estimated 300,000 people were without water for days.

The lawsuit said West Virginia American didn't react to or prepare for the spill, and Eastman Chemical Co. didn't properly warn Freedom about the chemical's dangers or take appropriate action.

Freedom has admitted to criminal violations.

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