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Judge gives final approval of $600 million Flint water settlement

Judge gives final approval of $600 million Flint water settlement
Judge gives final approval of $600 million Flint water settlement 01:17

FLINT, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) - A Genesee County judge approved the $600 million settlement in the Flint water crisis, making it the biggest civil settlement in Michigan history, the state Attorney General's office announced Tuesday.

More than $626 million will be awarded -- $600 million from the state, $20 million from the city of Flint, $5 from McLaren Regional Medical Center and $1.25 million from Rowe Professional Services Co. 

Officials say about 80% of the settlement would go to claims of children who were minors when initially exposed to the Flint River water, with 2% for special education services, and 18% for claims of adults and property damage. 

Additionally, 1% would be for business losses.

The final approval from Chief Judge David Newblatt comes more than one year after the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan approved the settlement.

U.S. District Judge Judith preliminarily approved it in January 2021, giving her final approval in November 2021.  

"This historic settlement cannot undo the unimaginable hardship and heartbreaking health effects these families and children in Flint have endured," Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a statement. "This ruling provides families with much-needed compensation for the injuries they have suffered. I am proud of my team's tireless work on behalf of the people of Flint."

Last year, an engineering firm accused of having some responsibility for Flint's lead-contaminated water nearly 10 years ago settled a lawsuit with four families.

The families sued Lockwood, Andrews & Newman, known as LAN, and another company, Veolia North America, accusing them of not doing enough to get Flint to treat the highly corrosive water or to urge a return to a regional water supplier. 

In December 2022, the families reached a settlement with LAN.

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