“Acting at instruction of its insurers” oil rig owner seeks limit

Deepwater Horizon rig owner Transocean said its liability under federal law should be limited to the value of its interest in the rig and its freight, including accounts receivable as of April 28, or $26,764,083.

Transocean said it was acting at the instruction of its insurers and in order to preserve insurance coverage. Its affiliated companies have filed a petition in US District Court for the Southern District of Texas, in Houston, under the federal Limitation of Shipowner's Liability Act in connection with the recent Deepwater Horizon casualty.

One of the primary goals is to consolidate in a single court many of the lawsuits that have been filed following the Deepwater Horizon casualty to initiate an orderly process for these lawsuits and claims before a single, impartial federal judge, Transocean said.

Single fund for claims

The filing also would establish a single fund from which legitimate claims may be paid. Transocean believes this type of orderly process is in the best interests of all parties involved.

This filing does not impact lawsuits filed under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990.

Transocean has asked the Court to issue an injunction restraining certain lawsuits underway against these companies in any jurisdiction other than the Southern District of Texas. More than 100 lawsuits have been filed against the companies in multiple states and courts.