Managing the Risk of Offshore Oil and Gas Accidents
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Managing the Risk of Offshore Oil and Gas Accidents

The International Legal Dimension

Edited by Günther Handl and Kristoffer Svendsen

This book addresses the international legal dimension of the management of the risk of accidents associated with offshore oil and gas activities. It focuses on the prevention and minimization of harm as well as the post-accident management of loss through liability and compensation arrangements and the processing of mass claims for compensation. Government officials of countries with offshore industries, international civil servants and academics in related fields will find the book a valuable resource.
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Chapter 12: Other mass tort claims perspectives: mass tort settlements in a European context

Harald Koch and Joachim Zekoll

Abstract

This chapter looks at European approaches to handling mass torts claims from three different perspectives in an effort not only to sketch European experiences in a pointillist fashion, but also to extract some common denominators that are suitable for comparison with central elements of other legal systems. First, the chapter highlights the key differences that exist between mass litigation in Europe and the United States. Second, it presents several case studies in which mass claims processing in Europe has been approached. Third, the chapter identifies some general characteristics of mass torts claims processing in Europe, that is, the distinctive role of state institutions, the preference of compensation over law enforcement and the enactment of substantive laws in reaction to mass litigation. In the aggregate, these characteristics shed light on the question of whether risk management in mass tort situations can be improved by the way in which claims are being processed.

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