GM Faulty Ignition-switch Program Registers More than 100 Death Claims

Published Date : Aug 27, 2014

The General Motors’ program built to compensate victims of crashes caused due to faulty ignition switches in company’s vehicles has received 107 claims for death as of Tuesday, according to Amy Weiss, the spokesperson for Kenneth Feinberg - the lawyer handling the program. 

Amy stated that the 107 death claims are amongst the 309 claims submitted in the program so far. The program started to accept claims on the 1st August, and will continue till 31st December. 

For a claim to be deemed eligible for further procedures, it is being evaluated by Feinberg and staff to see whether the faulty ignition switch was the only reason behind death or serious physical injury of a claimant. If the reason was indeed the faulty ignition switch, Feinberg and staff will determine the amount of compensation that the company is liable to pay. 

The number of death claims already largely exceeds GM’s official claim of 13 deaths from faulty ignition switches. The case had prompted GM to recall 2.6 million vehicles from consumers and market earlier this year. 

Jere Beasley, a lawyer who represents many people with claims submitted to GM, said that the speed for submitting claims is considerably slow that what was initially expected. This could be partly because lawyers are waiting to see the amount of claims that would be offered to present claims before bringing newer ones. Additionally, waiting allows lawyers to gather evidence for determining whether certain accidents are actually eligible for claims or not, thus gathering points to strengthen their cases.