Flint water settlement claims deadline extended to June 30

Beth LeBlanc
The Detroit News

Flint residents seeking to participate in the historic $626.25 million water crisis settlement now have until June 30 to file claims as officials give them a chance to provide better documentation.

U.S. District Judge Judith Levy approved the extension from a May 12 deadline to June 30 in a Monday order after receiving a report from the court's special master overseeing the claim process

"The report and recommendation advises that although it is clear that all involved are working diligently to compile the information and documentation necessary to support claims, some claimants have experienced delays or difficulties in obtaining certain required documents," Levy wrote in Monday's order.  

The claims period opened for submission online and through mail on Jan. 12 and was supposed to conclude May 12. 

Flint residents seeking to participate in the historic $626.25 million water crisis settlement now have until June 30 to file claims in order to provide better documentation

Most of the claimants involved in the case will have their documents prepared and submitted by their lawyers. 

More than 50,000 people registered to file claims. The total registrations, which preceded the actual filing of claims, include more than half of the city of Flint's population, which stood at about 100,000 residents at the time of the water crisis. The population dropped to 95,000 during the 2020 census. 

At the time of the water crisis, about 30,000 residents were considered minors who will receive the largest share of the settlement. 

The settlement stems from multiple civil suits filed beginning in 2016, as the scope of the Flint water crisis began to emerge. The crisis occurred after April 2014 when the city under state emergency management switched its water source to the Flint River without the proper corrosion controls in place to to prevent water from leaching lead from the lead service lines. 

Levy approved the $626.25 million settlement in November. The settlement includes about $600 million from the state of Michigan, $20 million from the city of Flint, $5 million from McLaren Health Care Corp and $1.25 million from Rowe Professional Services Co.

Payouts from the settlement will be made based on a formula that directs more money to younger claimants and to those who can prove greater injury through blood and bone lead levels, cognitive deficits and overall level of exposure to lead-tainted water.