Boeing retains Kenneth Feinberg to oversee victims compensation fund

U.S. aerospace and defense giant Boeing announced on Wednesday that it had dedicated half of the $100 million it pledged to give to families of victims of the fatal Lion Air and Ethiopian Air crashes – and that it had retained the services of famed attorney Kenneth Feinberg to oversee its compensation fund.

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In addition to Feinberg, Camille Biros has also been hired to help administer the funds, of which Boeing had dedicated $50 million as of Wednesday. Biros has worked with Feinberg’s firm for decades.

"The tragic loss of life in both accidents continues to weigh heavily on all of us at Boeing, and we have the utmost sympathy for the loved ones of those on board," Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing chairman, president and CEO said in a statement. "Through our partnership with Feinberg and Biros, we hope affected families receive needed assistance as quickly and efficiently as possible."

Feinberg’s firm consists of experts in victim compensation – Feinberg himself was tasked with administering the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. He also worked on the fund distributed to the families of victims of the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting.

The company is compensating the families of victims of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashes – both of which involved its 737 Max jets.

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Airlines around the world have grounded the Max jets as a result of the deadly crashes. On Wednesday, United Airlines said it expects to be impacted throughout 2020 as a result of the Federal Aviation Administration's mandate that required air carriers to ground the aircraft.

Boeing’s shipment of the jetliners has been halted as it works out a software fix – which will ultimately need to be approved by the FAA.