The fallout from a defective ignition switch is getting worse for General Motors.
So far, 51 claims have been deemed eligible for compensation in connection with deaths that occurred because of a faulty ignition switch installed in about 2.6 million small cars. That number will “absolutely” rise from there, fund deputy administrator Camille Biros told Automotive News.
Eligible claims for catastrophic injuries sit at eight while 69 claims are eligible over less serious injuries. So far, 4,180 claims seeking compensation from GM have been received, though more may still come in.
The program stopped accepting claims on January.31, but they will accept those that are received with a time stamp from before the deadline. Processing all of these claims will likely take until the end of spring according to Biros.
In all of the affected cars, the faulty ignition switch could slip into the off position, stalling the engine and disabling the air bags. GM has set aside $400 million to $600 million to compensate those affected through a fund which is being run by Kenneth Feinberg. Feinberg has handled other high-profile victim compensation funds for the Sept.11 attacks and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
[Source: Automotive News]