ADDIS ABEBA – Families who lost relatives in two fatal Boeing 737 Max air crashes – in Indonesia and Ethiopia – are set to receive about $144,500 each from the company, media reports say on Tuesday.
The money comes from a $50m financial assistance fund, which Boeing announced in July.
The fund has started accepting claims, which must be submitted before 2020. T
According to Reuters, family members will not be required to waive or release the right to litigate as a condition of participation.
Lawyers for the victims’ families, many of whom are pursuing the company in court, have dismissed the fund as a publicity stunt.
“$144,000 doesn’t come close to compensating any of our families or any of the families,” Nomaan Husain, a Texas-based attorney who is representing 15 families, told the BBC.
“This is not something that is going to satisfy the families. The families really want answers.”
Nearly 100 lawsuits have been filed against Boeing by at least a dozen law firms representing families of the Ethiopian Airlines crash victims, who came from 35 different countries.
Families of about 60 victims have yet to file lawsuits but plaintiffs’ lawyers said they anticipate more to come. Most of the lawsuits do not make a specific dollar claim, though one law firm has said its clients are seeking more than $1 billion, according to Reuters.
More than 340 people died in the crashes. The Lion Air Boeing 737 Max crashed into the sea after taking off from Indonesia last October and the Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max crashed en route to Kenya in March.
The 737 Max plane has been grounded since March, as investigators evaluate its safety.