Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) said Monday that it will pay out 445.5 billion yen in damages to people displaced and otherwise affected by Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant crisis following the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster.
However, critics say the process to claim damages from TEPCO is needlessly complex due to complicated application forms and has resulted in only 40% of victims seeking a payout.
TEPCO said it will begin paying individual evacuees, businesses, farms and fisheries affected by the meltdown beginning in May.
TEPCO came under fire from the government last October after many people complained about the complicated forms to file claims for damages. The manual was 156 pages and the claims forms themselves were 60 pages.
In response to a request from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, TEPCO simplied the forms.
A consultation center that has been helping displaced Fukushima residents through the process of claiming compensation says that less than half of claimants have received payments.
TEPCO Vice President Keigo Aizawa on Monday responded to criticisms about the company's claims paperwork being too complicated, saying, "We have also received positive feedback from claimants and we are working to respond to each claim individually."
TEPCO said it will assign 1,000 more staff by the end of this month to help process applications and ensure payouts as quickly as possible.© Japan Today