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Thousands of people still waiting for their Fire Victim Trust funds

Tens of thousands of Camp Fire survivors are still waiting for payout from the trust fund.

Posted: Jan 12, 2021 11:37 AM
Updated: Jan 12, 2021 2:59 PM

UPDATE: 2:08 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 - An edit has been made to this article to show trust fund is handling the distribution of the settlement and not PG&E.

BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. - Tens of thousands of Camp Fire survivors are still waiting for the trust fund to pay them.

The utility agreed to pay more than 24 billion dollars, 13.5 billion to the survivors. Because there are tens of thousands of claims, that means people like Chellsee Lende will have to wait to get what PG&E owes them.

"It's really a blur,” Chellsee Lende said with tears in her eyes. “Everything has been chasing help and there is no help anywhere."

Chellsee lost everything in the Camp Fire.

"My kids went to three different schools. We've switched doctors. We've been everywhere just trying to survive.

For two years, she and her family have been trying to recover.

“We haven't been able to move forward. I lost my community," she shared. "I lost my sense of security. I lost my home. So, to have support or to ask for help now is hard."

Attorney James Frantz, from Frantz Law Group, is helping people like Chellsee and thousands of others to get paid. However, Chellsee says that this is about more than just the money.

"We all are feeling like the first day of the fire almost but worse because the day after that, everybody was still thinking of it," she said. "It was still fresh."

Frantz says there are some 50,000 claimants which, in turn, is slowing down the payout process. But, that doesn't help Chellsee and her family right now.

She continued, “But now it's like two years and everybody is saying why don't you just get over it? And you can't get over it until you actually move on."

Frantz says there is no set order for payment, but instead it's on a first filed, first paid basis.

Chellsee hopes she's one of the first because she can't wait to get home.

"Paradise is just paradise. It's amazing…or it was."

Once someone files a claim, it'll pay them up to $25,000 until their full claim can be processed.

Attorney Frantz told Action News Now that it will take around two years for all these cases to get resolved. He also said there are more these 50,000 claims makes it the largest mass case in history.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3055568

Reported Deaths: 34441
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles103280614122
San Bernardino2561091560
Riverside2504362645
San Diego2168352109
Orange2148082477
Santa Clara943661109
Kern86718565
Fresno82485968
Sacramento806781111
Alameda67952765
Ventura62101436
San Joaquin58290786
Contra Costa52965450
Stanislaus42882758
Tulare41867506
Monterey36126255
San Mateo32596309
San Francisco29321262
Solano25806106
Imperial25317465
Santa Barbara25083236
Merced24452308
Sonoma24068240
Kings19435145
Placer17380180
San Luis Obispo15929136
Madera13443151
Santa Cruz12298113
Marin11693157
Yolo10620131
Shasta9776122
Butte9474123
El Dorado782644
Sutter775478
Napa760140
Lassen519516
San Benito496343
Yuba495127
Tehama397142
Tuolumne338240
Nevada320673
Mendocino311432
Amador301631
Lake261230
Humboldt239324
Glenn193519
Colusa17339
Calaveras161723
Siskiyou144613
Mono11214
Inyo97429
Del Norte8662
Plumas5895
Modoc3853
Mariposa3464
Trinity3024
Sierra820
Alpine730
Unassigned00
Chico
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Hi: 67° Lo: 36°
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Oroville
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Chico
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As expected, we had much quieter weather around northern California on Wednesday with plenty of sunshine, much weaker wind, and a wide range of temperatures. Thursday will be similar, but much more active weather is coming.
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