WASHINGTON – The White House on Tuesday praised the work of a government fund that is awarding billions of dollars in compensation to victims and their families in the Sept. 11 attacks.
The White House (search) announced that the fund, on the final day of its work, is paying $250,000 to $7.1 million to each of the families of those killed in the attacks and $500 to several million dollars to each of those injured. The average death payment (search) is just above $2 million. There were 2,964 claims for those killed in the attacks and 4,429 claims for those who suffered injuries.
"We are pleased by the fund's successful efforts to compensate victims and their families," said White House spokesman Scott McClellan.
Congress imposed a deadline of midnight Tuesday to make final determinations on compensation. Kenneth Feinberg (search), the special master overseeing the fund, was to brief Bush on the details.
Once the deadline passes, officials expect it will take about eight to 10 weeks to get all of the checks mailed out.
About 98 percent of the families of those killed signed on with the fund, foregoing the chance to sue airlines and security companies for alleged negligence.