The General Motors (GM) victim compensation fund is said to be winding down. It has now been established that General Motors’ faulty ignition switches were responsible for at least 124 deaths and 266 injuries. I still believe those numbers are low. The information comes from a report from the compensation fund set up by GM. The fund, administered by Ken Feinberg, has finished processing the 4,342 claims it received by the Jan. 31 deadline. According to Mr. Feinberg, 80 percent — or 3,499 — of the claims were deemed eligible with 453 being determined to be deficient.
As we have mentioned previously, claimants can’t appeal the fund’s decision on eligibility. Based on our experience, I believe the fund has been administered in a fair and efficient manner. There were certain rules put in place by GM at the outset. The lawyers in our firm and in Lance Cooper’s firm, who are handling claims, give Mr. Feinberg, Camille Biros and their staff high marks.
According to Ms. Biros, the program’s Deputy Administrator, the fund has made 280 compensation offers so far. Of those, 209 have been accepted and six have been rejected. Each claimant has 90 days to accept or reject a compensation offer. Persons with deficient claims had until July 31 to provide supporting documents. It was critically important to furnish all of the documentation necessary in order for a claimant to receive maximum settlement amounts.
We understand that 24 of the 453 deficient claims contend that the switches caused a death, with the rest being injury claims. As we have reported, GM recalled 2.6 million Chevrolet Cobalts and other small cars last year, but acknowledged it knew about the ignition switch problems for more than a decade. As of March 31, GM had paid $200 million to settle claims filed with Mr. Feinberg. GM has said it expects to pay up to $600 million. Our firm and the Cooper firm have filed 105 claims, and 51 of those have been already been paid and our clients totally satisfied.
Source: Claims Journal
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