GM compensation program sees death toll jumping to 74 image

After the weekly update on the progress of compensation claims stemming from the General Motors ignition switch recall debacle, the lawyer’s office administering the company’s ignition switch victim’s fund has accepted seven more claims eligible for compensation for fatalities, the total standing at 74.

Back in February 2014, GM – the largest US automaker and the third biggest in the world, announced a recall of 2.6 million cars that were equipped with a defective ignition switch – the faulty part could stop the engine mid-driving, cutting power to essential safety systems, including the airbags. Once the safety campaign started, GM also acknowledged it was at least a decade late issuing it, with the ensuing scandal forcing the carmaker to bring outside attorney Kenneth Feinberg to oversee the company’s established victims’ compensation fund. As of March 20, the total tally of the program stands at 200 claims: 74 for deaths, 11 for severe injuries and another 115 for minor injuries that still required hospitalization – all eligible for compensation.

So far GM has already set aside around $400 million and through the deadline that lasted until January 31, Feinberg’s office received 475 claims for deaths, 289 for catastrophic injuries and 3,578 for less-serious injuries. So far, the report mentioned 1,025 claims were ineligible, and another 1,326 were still under review. Another 1,075 claims had insufficient paperwork and 716 lacked any documentation.

Via Reuters