The $800 million award would be divided among thousands of potential claimants.
A Nevada judge has approved an $800 million settlement between MGM Resorts International and family members of the victims of the 2017 Las Vegas shooting.
According to CNN, all sides in the class action against the owner of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino agreed to the terms of the settlement.
Robert Eglet, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said the settlement may be finalized. However, there is a 30-day window for appeal.
“We are hopeful it will be completed in a manner that we will be able to disperse [sic] the victims’ funds before the end of the year,” Eglet told CNN.
The full award will be divided amongst the more than 4,000 participants in the class action against MGM and Mandalay. Individual pay-outs will be determined by a pair of retired judges acting as independent mediators.
In most such cases, victims—or their family members, in the case of those suing on behalf of a lost loved one—receive an amount in accordance with damages sustained.
Eglet said that, of all the individuals represented in the class, only one has since decided to opt out from the suit and subsequent settlement.
“There’ve been no objections and we expect no appeals,” he added. “We’ll send out notices of the order. After 30 days, the $800 million will be deposited.”
MGM’s insurer will cover about $749 million of that amount.
Despite likely being liable for the remainder, neither MGM nor the Mandalay’s management has admitted responsibility for the shooting.
The shooting itself, notes CNN, took place on October 1st, 2017.
Stephen Paddock, described as a “reclusive 64-year old gambler,” amassed an arsenal of semi-automatic rifles—several equipped with bump stocks to increase their respective rates of fire—in his Mandalay Bay suite. He made extensive and intensive preparations to target the Route 91 Harvest Festival, which was taking place alongside the Las Vegas Strip and across from his high-story room.
The mass shooting, which remains the deadliest in U.S. history, left 58 people dead and at least 700 wounded.
However, Paddock’s motive for the massacre is unknown—when authorities managed to pinpoint his location and smash down the door to his suite, Paddock was discovered dead, killed by a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
“What we have been able to answer are the questions of who, what, when, where, and how,” Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said in a 2018 press conference. “What we have not been able to answer definitively is the “why” Stephen Paddock committed this act.”
While careful not to admit liability, MGM said it is grateful that the company was able to reach an agreement with victims and their family members.
“We are grateful that the decision brings families, victims and the community closer to closure,” MGM said in a statement. “It is especially meaningful that the decision comes one day before the third anniversary of the incident, a time of great sadness and reflection.”