Camp Fire Settlement Update

Camp Fire Settlement Update

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Camp Fire victims at risk of not receiving in full what is owed to them have the right to vote on PG&E’s bankruptcy exit plan by May 15, 2020. We anticipate that by April 17, 2020 you will receive a ballot to vote on the settlement proposal. If you do not receive one by then, please contact us.

We have provided here downloadable links to the Summary of the Proposed Victims’ Trust Fund, the full Disclosure Statement, and Supplemental Statements. The Disclosure Statement is contradictory as to the right to a jury trial if a claimant is not satisfied with the Trustee and Administrator’s offers. We will look into this issue more fully and advise you shortly. Please VOTE. Send us a copy of your ballot when it is completed, if you are able.

Finally, we want to address and respond to a rumor that seems to be making the rounds: “People are talking about we may not end up getting anything in the end of this. I’m trying to find out what is fact and just talk.” This rumor is false. Every victim that is qualified should receive some financial relief from the fund. We at Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman will work to maximize your compensation.

Thank you and stay healthy!

Our firm created this page to keep our clients as up-to-date as possible on the details of the PG&E Camp Fire settlement. We will update this page regularly with PG&E wildfire settlement news, information, and documents for Camp Fire victims.

On March 20, 2020, PG&E reached a bankruptcy deal with California Governor Gavin Newsom, which pledges billions to wildfire victims and removes a key hurdle for the utility to come out of bankruptcy. As part of the settlement, PG&E agreed to use shareholder funding to reduce its debt load and submit to stronger safety oversight. Failure to make safety enhancements could lead to the state of California taking over the utility. Likewise, if PG&E does not emerge from bankruptcy by June 30, 2020, the utility will be forced to put itself up for sale.

On March 23, 2020, PG&E stated in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that it pleaded guilty to 84 counts of involuntary manslaughter related to the Camp Fire. PG&E also noted in the filing that it pleaded guilty to one count of causing a fire in violation of the state penal code. Under the terms of the deal, prosecutors have agreed not to pursue further criminal charges.

Per the SEC filing:

“The Utility will be sentenced to pay the maximum total fine and penalty of approximately $3.5 million. The Agreement provides that no other or additional sentence will be imposed on the Utility in the criminal action in connection with the 2018 Camp fire…The Utility has also agreed to pay $500,000 to the Butte County District Attorney Environmental and Consumer Protection Fund to reimburse costs spent on the investigation of the 2018 Camp fire.”

Fire Victims Claims Resolution Procedures

The proposed method of dividing the PG&E Camp Fire settlement is now available. It is complicated and leaves many unknowns. Below you will find “Fire Victims Claims Resolution Procedures” and other important documents which you can download and review.

You have already filed a claim form for the court. Next, you will have to fill out a claim questionnaire that the court has approved, which will be evaluated and possibly offers to settle made. While we do not yet have a copy of the claims questionnaire, we expect that it will ask for summaries of all of the information we detail below.

  • Pilliod et al. v. Monsanto Co. $2 Billion
  • Dewayne “Lee” Johnson v. Monsanto Co. $289.2 Million
  • Pharmaceutical Settlement $105 Million
  • Hardeman v. Monsanto Co. $80 Million
  • Paxil Pediatric Class Action $63 Million
  • Third-Party Payer Class Action $40 Million
  • Defective Drug Class Action $28 Million
  • Whistleblower Settlement $18 Million

    $18 million settlement for Boeing government overcharging on aircraft maintenance

  • A Major US Plane Crash $17.5 Million
  • Commercial Truck Accident $15 Million

    $15 million settlement for a person gravely injured by a major truck company

  • Best Law Firms 2021
    Best Law Firms 2021

    The U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process.

  • National Trial Lawyers Top 100
    National Trial Lawyers Top 100

    The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 recognized the law firms of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, the Miller Firm and Audet & Partners with the 2019 Trial Team of the Year award (in the Mass Torts category) for their work in the groundbreaking case of Dewayne “Lee” Johnson v. Monsanto Company.

  • Elite Trial Lawyers
    Elite Trial Lawyers

    NLJ and American Lawyer Media honor law firms and attorneys as Elite Trial Lawyers for their cutting-edge legal work on behalf of plaintiffs in practice areas ranging from mass torts to securities litigation.

  • AV Top Ranked Law Firm
    AV Top Ranked Law Firm

    Less than one-half of one percent of firms across the nation have achieved this ranking. A firm must have a high percentage of lawyers who have achieved the prestigious AV® Preeminent rating by Martindale-Hubbell®.

  • Listed in Best Lawyers
    Listed in Best Lawyers

    Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. A listing in Best Lawyers is widely regarded by both clients and legal professionals as a significant honor, conferred on a lawyer by his or her peers.

  • Verdicts Hall of Fame
    Verdicts Hall of Fame

    The National Law Journal inducted Baum Hedlund into the Verdicts Hall of Fame for obtaining the $2 billion landmark verdict in the Roundup cancer case of Pilliod et al. v. Monsanto. The verdict was #1 in California and #2 in the U.S. in 2019 and is #9 in American history.

  • AV Rated
    AV Rated

    An AV® rating reflects an attorney who has reached the heights of professional excellence. The rating signifies the highest legal ability, and very high adherence to professional standards of conduct, ethics, reliability, and diligence.

  • Super Lawyers
    Super Lawyers

    Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.

  • National Board of Trial Advocacy
    National Board of Trial Advocacy

    The National Board of Trial Advocacy is dedicated to bettering the quality of trial advocacy in our nation’s courtrooms and helping consumers find experienced and highly qualified trial lawyers.

  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers
    Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers

    Published annually, the Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers list recognizes the “best of the best” in this area of the law through nominations, research, and review by a board of their peers.

  • Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
    Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum

    Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum is one of the most prestigious groups of trial lawyers in the United States.  Membership is limited to attorneys who have won million and multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements.

  • Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers
    Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers

    The Bar Register is the definitive guide to the most distinguished law firms in America. It includes only those select law practices that have earned the highest rating in the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory and have been designated by their colleagues as preeminent in their field.


PG&E Fire Settlement | Fire Victims Claims Resolution

These are the categories of loss and proof of loss that the Fire Victims Claims Resolution Procedures (FVCRP) suggest.

Real Property Damages – The loss of value of the property from the day before and after the fire including loss of trees and gardens. The cost of repair or rebuilding.

Proof may include:

  • Verification of ownership
  • Appraisals
  • Tax records
  • Purchase records
  • Mortgage or loan documentation showing the pre-Fire condition or value of the property
  • Pre-Fire and post-Fire photos or videos of the structures (interior or exterior) or other damaged areas of the property
  • Architectural or engineering drawings
  • Permits
  • Contractor rebuild or repair estimates or invoices
  • Arborist reports, timber surveys, or documents relating to landscaping
  • Other supporting documents within the Claimant’s possession

Personal property – This is all your “stuff” including clothing, furniture, electronics, paintings, photographs, sculptures, collections, hygiene products and the entire contents of your residence, garage, barn, outdoors. We are including pets in this category as well. If you lost a pet(s), a photo or two of the pet(s) you lost would enhance this claim.

Proof may include:

  • List of items destroyed or damaged in the residence (you can recycle the insurance list that you made; with the added things you may have forgotten)
  • Proofs of purchase
  • Pre-fire and post-fire photos
  • Appraisals
  • Other supporting documents within the Claimant’s possession (for the Camp Fire, we will get affidavits for you and those who are familiar with your contents to complete, if necessary)

Personal income loss – If you were out of work or lost a job, this is the category to place that loss. This includes lost rental income.

Proof may include:

  • Tax returns, including all schedules and attachments
  • W-2 Forms
  • 1099 Forms
  • Lease agreements or canceled rent checks
  • Bank account statements identifying earnings
  • Paycheck stubs or payroll records
  • Other supporting documents within your possession

Business income loss

Proof may include:

  • Description of the business, including its mission statement; (a video or audio recording is good)
  • Tax returns, including all schedules or attachments
  • Financial statements, including profit and loss statements
  • Articles of Incorporation, bylaws, shareholder lists, or partnership or limited partnership agreements
  • Leases, deeds, titles, or other documents identifying the property owned or occupied by the business
  • Canceled contracts
  • Photos, videos, or other documentary evidence of fire damage to your home or business
  • Other supporting documents within your possession

Other out-of-pocket expenses – This is for living and moving expenses, medical, counseling, and other expenses not accounted for in the other categories.

Proof may include:

  • Medical bills
  • Rental bills
  • Canceled checks
  • Any other proof of expenses paid or incurred that you may have

Serious personal injury – For many, this will be the most difficult category (along with emotional distress). If you signed authorizations, we are obtaining your medical records. If you have sought medical treatment and have medical records and bills, and we have not previously asked you for an authorization to obtain them, please get in touch with us.

Emotional Distress – This contemplates the fear, anxiety, and emotional suffering you and your family experienced during your escape from the fire.

As noted above, the questionnaire has not yet been approved by the court. The specifics may be modified in some respects, but this is what we anticipate.

There is an appeals process and right-to-jury-trial under certain circumstances. We will consult with you as to the adequacy of the response to your proof of claim, and rights going forward after the response. Your proof of claim is very important as it will be the foundation for your monetary recovery, so we urge you to provide as much information now as you can.

There will be a court-approved trust established through which the settlement funds will be distributed once a final settlement of your claim is reached. NO ONE WILL BE PAID IN STOCK—all settlements will be paid in cash.

If you would like more information, this page contains a helpful Q&A for fire victims. Alternatively, you can always contact us by emailing or calling your paralegal, Janet. We are happy to help.

Firm Reviews

What Our Clients Are Saying
  • Top Legal Minds in the Country

    “The Baum, Hedlund firm has some of the top legal minds in the country; they are driven, determined, trustworthy, ethical and passionate.”

    - From Best Lawyers® Best Law Firms
  • I Can’t Imagine a Better Law Firm

    “Multiple lawyers recommended Baum Hedlund to me and I have been consistently impressed with the quality of their work.”

    - Best Law Firms Survey
  • Diligent & Professional Representation

    “Thanks to your efforts I was able to recover from a tragic experience and turn my life around for the best.”

    - W.T.
  • Our Best Interest Was Always Number One on Your List

    “A special thank you to your Spanish-speaking staff for the extra effort put into this case. The language barrier was never a problem, and we are so very thankful to them. Your name holds much respect in our family.”

    - G.C. & C.C
  • We Have Never Met a More Wonderful Group of People

    “It is obvious that the people at Baum, Hedlund, Aristei, & Goldman believe in what they do. And that you all really care about your clients.”

    - The B. Family

Contact Us Today

No Fees Unless We Win
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • +1
    Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please enter your city.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.