Exide Technologies used to operate a lead-acid battery smelter in Los Angeles County. The factory has been closed, and the site has been abandoned. Families who live near the abandoned site have concerns for their safety, particularly in light of Exide Technologies’ bankruptcy plan. The bankruptcy plan would allow the company to abandon the site without any remediation or cleanup effort. 

Residents are concerned about what they see as an environmental disaster zone. Their children play in yards polluted with lead, and the soil around thousands of homes may be polluted with dangerous lead. The Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Justice have stated that they will not oppose Exide’s bankruptcy plan. As a result, California taxpayers will be responsible for funding an environmental cleanup, which could cost over $270 million.

California Lawmakers Have Opposed the Bankruptcy Plan

Some California lawmakers opposed Exide’s bankruptcy plan, claiming that it will cause harm to working-class Latinos who live near the abandoned plant. Some demanded that the state step in to try to stop the plan from going forward. Their efforts were in vain. The bankruptcy settlement between the Department of Justice and Exide Technologies has already been finalized. 

Over the years, some state officials had promised that the company would have to reimburse the 250 million dollars that California taxpayers have already put toward cleaning up the area. The work to make the area safe is not over, however, and some expect it to cost additional hundreds of millions of dollars.

Initially, the US attorney’s office entered into a non-prosecution agreement with Exide Technologies as part of the deal, and the company was required to comply with all orders issued by the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC). However, the finalized bankruptcy settlement does not require the company to follow DTSC’s demands. 

While many people criticize the bankruptcy settlement agreement, others have stated nothing out of the ordinary in the bankruptcy agreement. Some doubt that Exide would have been capable of carrying out the cleanup process under any circumstances. Their initial efforts had all been in vain.

Seeking a Bankruptcy in California

The Exide Technologies bankruptcy settlement is just one of many large Chapter 13 bankruptcies filed and finalized in the last year. Many large corporations have filed for bankruptcy, including multiple Southern California restaurant chains. Additionally, many individuals have needed to file for bankruptcy due to the coronavirus shutdowns.

If you have suffered financially and are struggling to pay your bills or falling behind, bankruptcy could be an option for you. At Bankruptcy Law Center, we have helped thousands of San Diego area businesses, and individuals successfully finalized their bankruptcy settlement. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation and learn whether filing for bankruptcy could help give you the fresh financial start you need.