Legal Wrangling Over Pulse Funds Begins As Money Goes Out
Money from the OneOrlando Fund will start going to victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting, despite a lawsuit trying to block disbursement. A judge will hear a request next week to block payments until the fund has been audited.
But that’s not the only legal battle over the funds.
The 49 families who lost a loved one will each receive $350,000, and fund administrators say at least half of those are fighting over claims. If the claims aren’t immediately resolved, then they will be sent to probate court. Fund Administrator Ken Feinberg says legal wrangling goes with the territory.
“Same-sex partners at odds with biological parents, biological parents that are divorced fighting with one another,” said Feinberg.
According to a spreadsheet released by fund administrators, eight victims who spent at least 24 days in the hospital will receive $300,000 each. There are 182 claimants who were at the club but not injured who will each receive $25,000.
All of the money is expected to go out by Friday, but a survivor is trying to block distribution of the money until there’s an audit. Attorney Paul Zeniewitz is seeking the audit on behalf of survivor Jillian Amador. He’s concerned that the amount raised for the fund seems low and the number of qualified claimants seems high.
Feinberg said a similar lawsuit to block disbursements was filed with the 9/11 fund.
A gunman killed 49 and injured more than 50 others at the Pulse nightclub last June in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.