By Atlanta Business Chronicle

As lawsuits mount against BP plc for its ongoing massive oil spill into the Gulf of Mexico, a Georgia lawyers organization is headed to the beach for its annual summer convention.

Members of the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association (GTLA) will hold the organizationâ¿¿s annual summer convention July 29 â¿¿ 31 in Destin, Fla. GTLA had been under pressure to cancel or move the event. But GTLA President Michael Warshauer said canceling the convention was not an option.

⿿The people of the Gulf region are hurting,⿝ he said in a news release. ⿿Collectively, they are the victims of perhaps the most egregious tortious conduct ever committed in the United States. Our organization, like many others throughout the country, is committed to helping people who have been harmed by the careless, reckless, wrongful conduct of greedy corporations.⿝

GTLA is made up of 1,900 attorneys, paralegals and law students.

Earlier in the week, BP (NYSE: BP) reported almost 95,000 claims have been submitted and it has made more than 47,000 payments totaling almost $147 million.

BP has spent $3.12 billion to battles issues related to the oil spill. Those costs include the cost of the spill response, containment, relief well drilling, grants to the Gulf states, claims paid and federal costs. The figure does not include the $20 billion escrow fund the company agreed to with the federal government

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