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Tentative $55M settlement reached in Surfside Condo collapse wrongful death lawsuit

Building Collapse Miami
A view of a building is shown after a partial collapse, Thursday, June 24, 2021, in Surfside, Fla. A wing of a 12-story beachfront condo building collapsed with a roar in a town outside Miami early Thursday, trapping residents in rubble and twisted metal. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

The families of victims and survivors of the Surfside Champlain Towers South collapse have reached a tentative settlement topping $55 million with three defendants in a wrongful-death lawsuit, according to court documents filed Tuesday.

Insurers representing the engineering firm responsible for inspecting and certifying the building’s structural integrity, Morabito Consultants, and the firm representing the condo association, Becker & Poliakoff P.A., have agreed to settle for $16 million and $31 million, respectively, according to a joint motion to stay all claims against the defendants.
Another defendant, DeSimone Consulting Engineers, has agreed to settle for $8.55 million, according to the filing.
A portion of the Champlain Towers South building collapsed in the middle of the night on June 24, 2021  killing 98 people. The victims ranged in age from 1 to 92 years old.
Building Collapse Miami
Rescue workers search in the rubble at the Champlain Towers South Condo, Friday, June 25, 2021, in Surfside, Fla. The seaside condominium tower collapsed on Thursday. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
In a statement Tuesday, Becker reiterated its denial of responsibility “for the collapse or the resulting damage” and said the settlement “is not a finding of fault.”
Becker adds, “It is important to note that the cause of the collapse has yet to be identified and we continue to believe that culpable parties should be held accountable.”
The settlement must still receive final approval.
The concrete in the pool and underground garage are the focus of engineers and government officials investigating the cause of the collapse.
The Florida legislature is about to pass a bill meant to prevent another building collapse from happening again with more stringent inspections and mandatory reserves.