Attorneys for the victims of the bridge collapse that killed 13 people in Minneapolis in August 2007 announced Monday that they had reached a settlement with the engineering company responsible for inspecting the bridge. In negotiations held this past weekend, San Francisco-based URS Corp. agreed to pay $52.4 million to more than 100 people who sued the company in Minnesota state court.
Monday’s settlement announcement concludes three years of work on behalf of the victims by a 17-firm pro bono consortium led by Chris Messerly and Philip Sieff at Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi. The I-35W bridge in Minneapolis collapsed into the Mississippi River on August 1, 2007, killing 13 people and injuring 145. The American Lawyer previously chronicled the pro bono efforts that led to the state of Minnesota creating a $36.64 million fund for victims in May 2008. PCI Corp., the construction company that was resurfacing the bridge at the time of its collapse, later settled lawsuits brought by victims for $10.15 million. From the latest settlement’s proceeds, $2.268 million will go to insurance companies that previously paid workers’ compensation and property damage losses, and $1.5 million will be contributed to fund a permanent memorial to those killed in the collapse.
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