GM cites progress in faulty ignition-switch case settlement talks
Apr 22, 2016 02:28 AM EDT
General Motors' attorney revealed on Wednesday that the company has made "significant progress" in settling the series of lawsuits which stem from injuries and deaths allegedly linked to a faulty ignition switch that prompted the recall of 2.6 million cars.
Since the recall last 2014, GM has already paid around $2 billion in settlements and penalties. According to Fortune, GM has already admitted that some if its employees already have knowledge regarding the ignition switch problem. GM, however, still faces 235 injury and death related lawsuits consolidated before the federal judge in Manhattan.
Richard Godfrey, a lawyer for GM, said they are making "significant progress" regarding the possible resolutions to the cases. The attorney representing the plaintiffs, Robert Hilliard, said GM has been participating actively on settling the cases. US District Judge Jesse Furman also consolidated the cases during their hearing at the Manhattan federal court as per Reuters.
As reported by WSAU, unlike all the other trials, the Yingling case involved death rather than the usual alleged injury. The case focused on the death of James Yingling who was married and a father of five. The suit claimed that the accident was caused by a defective ignition system in Yingling's 2006 Saturn Ion.
According to reports, GM has already made confidential deals in order to resolve 1,380 cases of injury and deaths which were represented by Hilliard's firm. The settlement also set up an out-of-court fund which was handled by a Washington lawyer and compensation expert, Kenneth Feinberg. The team already resolved 400 claims of death and injury.
Cases of car devaluation have also been faced by GM. The federal court is currently weighing the extent to which their cases will be affected by GM's bankruptcy in 2009. Jim Cain, GM's spokesman, said they are looking into the different facts of each case and will consider settlements. However, the process and discussions will still remain confidential.