Tampa, Florida


Email Tom Young Tom Young on LinkedIn Tom Young on Twitter Tom Young on Facebook Tom Young on Avvo
Tom Young
Tom Young
Attorney • (813) 251-9706

BP Business Economic Loss Claim Appeal 2016-633: Location in “tourist area” sufficient for tourism designation


The following is an Appeal Panel Decision issued pursuant to Section 6 of the BP Deepwater Horizon Economic & Property Damages Settlement Agreement and the Rules Governing the BP Appeals Process. Links may have been added to assist the reader. The original decision may be found here, as well as a glossary of BP Settlement terms.

Claimant, a consignment shop in Osprey, Sarasota County, Florida, appeals on the basis that it should have been awarded a Tourism designation. Claimant asserts that it mostly sells its inventory to “snowbirds.” Claimant argues that it should have received a Tourism designation because it is located in a “tourist-focused area” and on a major thoroughfare that is used by tourists to access the numerous beaches and resorts in the area. Claimant also contends that it should have been awarded a Tourism designation because its revenue peaks in winter during the height of tourist season.

The Settlement Agreement defines “tourism” as “businesses which provide services such as attracting, transporting, accommodating or catering to the needs or wants of persons traveling to, or staying in, places outside their home community.” Exhibit 2 lists specific NAICS industry codes of businesses that meet the “tourism” definition. Claimant’s NAICS code is not among those listed In Exhibit 2 of the Settlement Agreement. However, Policy 289 provides that even if the NAICS code for a claimant is not one of the codes listed in Exhibit 2, a claimant may still fall under the Tourism designation. Characterization of a business as Tourism shall be bases on the “totality of circumstances.”

BP argues that there is no documentation in the record supporting Claimant’s assertion that it sells artwork to non-locals. That it appears from the photos on Claimant’s website that its “20,000+ square feet” showroom is filled mostly with home furniture, and Claimant’s customer testimonials are exclusively from the local community and surrounding areas. Moreover, BP asserts that tourists would not consign their home furnishings or collectables while traveling.

However, it is a fact that Claimant is located in a well-known tourism destination, and it serves persons traveling outside their home community due to its proximity to tourist accommodations and attractions. Claimant’s location is in the heart of a tourist area, and this area of Florida clearly caters to persons traveling outside their home community. While tourist may not usually consign their home furnishings or collectables while traveling they are certainly prone to purchase such items while traveling or staying at their vacation locations. This panelist finds that the “totality of circumstances” supports the Claimant’s position, and therefore, the Claimant’s Final Proposal is adopted.

Leave a Comment

Have an opinion? Please leave a comment using the box below.

For information on acceptable commenting practices, please visit Lifehacker's guide to weblog comments. Comments containing spam or profanity will be filtered or deleted.