An Update on the 2017 Las Vegas Shooting
Recently, MGM Grand Resorts has confirmed that they will pay up to 800 million dollars to the victims of the shooting at the nearby music festival after Stephen Paddock shot 547 people from his suite at Mandalay Bay. The settlement has finally put an end to what was otherwise the most reviewed liability case in modern history. The case additionally has brought up novel concerns, such as how liable a company is for a mass shooting.
Robert Eglet, a lawyer for the victims, has said the 735–800 million dollars will cover approximately all of the cases directly pertaining to the shooting. Eglet also commented, “While nothing will be able to bring back the lives lost or undo the horrors so many suffered on that day, this settlement will provide fair compensation for thousands of victims and their families.”
The settlement would account for 4,500 affected people. However, an unconfirmed element to the settlement is whether or not any victims will choose the traditional court route. The number of people who decide to join the effort will determine how much MGM’s insurers will be required to pay.
Jim Murren, chief executive of MGM Grand, claims that the process is “a major step, and one that we hoped for a long time would be possible. We have always believed that prolonged litigation around these matters is in no one’s best interest.”
At first, MGM went for a strict legal strategy after multiple legal claims were initiated by relatives of the deceased and the injured; the company sued over 1,000 of the plaintiffs and the people who hinted that they may take legal action. Their decision, although not going for any money, sparked outrage.
The prosecutors claimed that MGM Grand allowed Paddock to store and possess thousands of bullets and high rifled guns in his suite.
The company asserted, however, that Paddock was committing an act of terrorism under the federal law’s definition, and therefore, because of an obscure law passed after the 9/11 incident, they were exempt from compensating the victims.
Although it is not confirmed why MGM Grand decided to compromise by introducing the settlement, some attribute its cause to its poor publicity induced by the criticized tactics that it used to prevent liability.
According to MGM Grand, the process will likely extend to late 2020.