A man kneeling in front of the collapsed condo in Surfside, Florida
Source: Getty Images

Surfside Condo Collapse Settlement Is Almost $1 Billion, Needs Final Approval

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May. 12 2022, Published 2:34 p.m. ET

Almost a year after the collapse of a Miami-area condo building killed 98 people, victims' families have reached a settlement with the insurance companies and developers. How much do condo collapse victims' families get paid?

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The settlement awards almost $1 billion to the families of victims who lost their lives in the collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium in Surfside, Fla. The $997 million settlement needs final approval, and it isn't clear just yet how much each family will get, The New York Times reports.

surfside condo victims
Source: Getty Images
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The Surfside condo collapse was the deadliest on record.

The collapse of the 12-story Surfside condo on June 24, 2021, was one of the deadliest building collapses in history. Of the 37 people survivors, only three people were pulled out alive from the rubble of the collapsed half of the building. There were 35 residents rescued from the uncollapsed part of the building, which was demolished 10 days later.

Investigations into what caused the building collapse are still ongoing and could continue for years.

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“I think it’s the best result that we could hope for given the situation. There’s really no amount of money that makes everything right,” Pablo Rodriguez told the Times. Rodriquez’s mother and grandmother were killed in the collapse.

A judge awarded an $83 million settlement to the Florida condo collapse survivors.

Earlier this year, Miami-Dade County Judge Michael Hanzman approved an $83 million settlement for the surviving residents of the building. They lost their homes and belongings when the building was demolished. The majority of funds for that settlement, about $50 million, came from the condo association’s insurance carrier, and $33 million is from the future sale of the property, CNN reports. The property is estimated to sell for at least $120 million.

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"Everybody in this case is a victim, there is no question about that," Hanzman reportedly said before approving the settlement for survivors. "Please know that this court is not diminishing in any respect your pain and suffering and trauma you have suffered...we have 98 people who lost their lives, and this case has to be kept in perspective."

The settlement is for a class-action lawsuit filed by victims’ families.

Families of the victims who died in the collapse filed a class-action lawsuit against the condo association, the city of Surfside, and the engineering, architectural, and other companies involved in developing and maintaining the property, CNN reports.

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The lawsuit also included developers of the neighboring building, Eighty Seven Park. The plaintiffs accused construction on the adjacent building of damaging Champlain Towers South, the Times reports.

Three years before the collapse, an engineer reported “major structural damage” to a concrete slab below the condo pool deck and “abundant” cracking and crumbling of the columns in the building’s underground parking, the Times reported.

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surfside rescue
Source: Getty Images

Survivors still struggle with trauma from the collapse.

Survivors of the tragedy are still dealing with the aftermath of that day. Neil Handler, the father of teen Jonah Handler who was pulled from the rubble of the building, told the Times that his son still struggles with the events of that day. When the building collapsed, the boy was sitting next to his mother, Stacie Fang. Both were rescued alive, but Fang died at the hospital.

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Jonah reportedly suffered numerous bone fractures as well as emotional and psychological trauma.

“Nobody can deal with what I dealt with last Sunday on Mother’s Day — that’s not something any money is ever going to replace for him,” Neil Handler told the Times.

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