The $20 billion compensation fund for victims of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill has begun taking applications, but plaintiffs lawyers doubt it would significantly forestall litigation. In fact, they said, it could lead to a new wave of lawsuits.

Many of their clients, especially large businesses such as hotel owners, condominium developers and tourism operators, are unlikely to seek final settlements anytime soon — if at all, they said. For one thing, the claims process might not give them enough time to calculate their losses. For another, it’s unclear whether the fund would compensate governmental entities or businesses that are geographically remote from the spill.

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