On Monday, June 30, 2014, General Motors finally announced its plan to
pay the families of victims killed by
defective ignition switch crashes.
Attorney Ken Feinberg announced the victim compensation plan at the National
Press Club, just before General Motors announced that it was going to
recall yet ANOTHER batch of vehicles from the roads. This time,
GM is yanking 8.4 million vehicles, 7.6 million of which will be recalled because of the defective ignition switches.
All told, that brings the number of cars recalled by General Motors this
year to 25 million — for those of you keeping score, that shatters
the record of number of recalls in one year by 4 million. (The previous
record holder was Ford from
way back in 1981.)
Per Feinberg, the compensation program will not cap the total money available
for victims. He said: “[GM will pay] whatever it costs to pay all
eligible claims under the protocol… There is no ceiling on the
Will everyone participate in the program? Perhaps not.
Some victims (and their families) may go after General Motors for punitive
damages and sue on their own.
The company insists that only 13 people (so far) have been killed because
of the defect. But non-company estimates are much higher. Representative
Diana DeGette of Colorado, who has been investigating the automaker, believes
that as many 100 deaths may be linked to the defective ignition switch.
Meanwhile, the company’s legal worries continue – prosecutors
in New York and California, federal prosecutors, and various State Attorney
Generals are all pursuing legal action against GM. The company has been
hit hard, financially, by the ongoing fiasco, racking up a
$1.2 billion debt for the second quarter.
The grand fate of GM notwithstanding, you may have very specific questions
or concerns about your case. Please contact our experienced Washington
DC car accident and
defective product attorneys here at Regan, Zambri & Long at (202) 759-6699 to get a thorough and
free consultation about what compensation options you may have and what
you can do next.