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Posts Tagged ‘GM lawsuit’

GM Wins Second Ignition Switch Lawsuit

Verdict could give automaker upper hand in settling remains suits.

by on Mar.30, 2016

General Motors won a second lawsuit in as many months over the role its faulty ignition switches played in an accident.

A jury has ruled that a defective General Motors ignition switch was not to blame for the 2014 crash of a vehicle in New Orleans. The second verdict to favor the automaker in a series of cases being heard in a federal courtroom in New York City, it could improve GM’s position as it looks to settle hundreds of other ignition switch cases.

The first trial was unexpectedly halted when evidence was presented showing the plaintiff lied about his crash and subsequent medical injuries. But four other so-called bellwether cases are yet to be heard by the court.

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“The jurors studied the merits of the case and saw the truth: This was a very minor accident that had absolutely nothing to do with the car’s ignition switch,” said GM, in a statement referring to the 2014 crash of a 2007 Saturn Sky. (more…)

Lawyers Line Up GM Execs for Ignition Switch Depositions

Lead attorney for national case waiting for cover-up documents.

by on Mar.20, 2015

GM CEO Mary Barra will be the final executive deposed in a national lawsuit against the automaker due to faulty ignition switches.

The saga that is General Motors and its faulty ignition switches is getting ready to ramp up as a Texas lawyer will begin deposing 35 GM executives, including CEO Mary Barra, in May.

Texas-based lawyer Robert Hilliard who was appointed by Federal Judge Jesse Furman as the co-lead counsel for the national GM ignition switch litigation, which may be the largest single product liability case in U.S. history, is kicking off his depositions next month.

The Last Word!

He’ll begin with Alicia Boler-Davis on May 6 and conclude with Barra on Oct. 8. GM has declined to comment on the case. Hilliard’s case may be bolstered by the automaker’s recent settlement with the family of Brooke Melton, the 29-year-old nurse who died in 2010 while driving one of GM’s vehicles equipped with one of the faulty switches. (more…)

GM Hit with 2nd $10 Bil Lawsuit

Suit claims losses on 27 million vehicles.

by on Oct.17, 2014

The lawsuit claims a 2010 Chevrolet Camaro has lost $2,000 in value due to the recall crisis.

General Motors has been hit with another lawsuit that could seek as much as $10 billion in compensation for owners who have allegedly seen the value of their vehicles fall due to the maker’s ongoing recall crisis.

Filed in Manhattan federal court, the lawsuit was prepared by the same, Seattle-based firm that brought another $10 billion claim against GM earlier this year, Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP.

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“The value of all GM-branded vehicles has diminished as a result of the widespread publication of those defects and New GM’s corporate culture of ignoring and concealing safety defects,” the lawsuit states, referring to the post-bankruptcy carmaker as “New GM.”

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Federal Judge Urges Settlement of GM Lawsuits

Most of the cases claim economic losses.

by on Aug.13, 2014

One of the replacement ignition switches.

A federal judge is encouraging attorneys to settle over 100 lawsuits that have been brought against General Motors in cases involving the maker’s defective ignition switches.

The majority of those cases involve economic losses, claims that used GM vehicles have lost value as a result of the maker’s ignition switch recall. But about a dozen of those cases involve personal injury claims, according to the Associated Press. In all, attorneys represent nearly 1,000 individual plaintiffs suing GM.

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U.S. District Judge Jesse M. Furman said he intends “to encourage settlement as much as possible.”  But whether the plaintiffs’ attorneys take the jurist’s advice may depend on what happens in another courtroom.

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GM Loses a Round in Key Ignition Switch Lawsuit

Court lets Melton family reopen lawsuit originally settled in 2013.

by on Aug.11, 2014

29-year-old Brooke Melton was killed in a crash involving her 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt.

General Motors’ legal morass continues to deepen, following an adverse ruling by a court in Georgia that allows the reopening of a case it thought it had settled out of the public’s eye more than a year ago.

Cobb County State Court Judge Kathryn Tanksley has denied GM’s motion to dismiss the new lawsuit filed in May by the family of Brooke Melton, a 29-year-old nurse killed in March 2010 when the ignition switch on her 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt slipped into accessory mode and the car collided with another vehicle, according to the suit. Melton died in Cobb County, part of the Atlanta metropolitan area.

Keeping Track!

Melton’s parents originally sued the company in 2011 and settled in September 2013 for a reported $5 million. The couple decided to try to reopen the case when internal GM documents began to emerge showing it had long known about the ignition switch problem but delayed a formal recall until February of this year. Parents Ken and Beth Melton are now claiming fraud, negligence and concealment in their new lawsuit. (more…)

GM Smacked with New Lawsuit Alleging 29 Deaths

Maker’s crashworthiness honor offset by new suit.

by on Jul.30, 2014

A new lawsuit against GM claims the compensation fund designed Kenneth Feinberg doesn't go far enough.

General Motors’ ignition switch recall has triggered a new lawsuit in which the plaintiffs are claiming that 29 people have died and 627 were injured in accidents in which the defective part was a factor.

The lawsuit, Abney vs. General Motors, was filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, which is emerging as the venue for cases against GM. The quasi-official number of deaths blamed on the defective ignition switch now stands at 13, according to figures from GM and the National Transportation Highway Safety Administration.

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The suit also attacks GM’s efforts to settle out of court with injured motorists through a procedure established by New York attorney Kenneth Feinberg. It covers claims that would not be eligible for the program, according to Robert Hilliard, the lawyer who filed the suit. The ineligible claims, according to Hillard, include accidents involving cars not among the 2.6 million vehicles initially recalled for switch issues and accidents in which the car’s airbags deployed. (more…)

California DA Targets GM with New Lawsuit

Maker accused of hiding defects, engaged in false, unfair advertising.

by on Jul.02, 2014

GM CEO Mary Barra is likely to have a number of legal battles on her hands over recalls.

The legal morass surrounding General Motors continues to get deeper despite this week’s announcement that it has established a special fund to compensate victims of crashes linked to a defective ignition switch.

In Orange County, in the heart of the intensely competitive Southern California new car market, the District Attorney’s office has brought a lawsuit against GM. The suit not only cites the defective ignition switch but also states GM has withheld information about nearly three dozen other defects. It also charges GM had engaged in unfair competition and false advertising in violation of California law when it failed to disclose those safety problems.

The Journal of Record!

The lawsuit was filed just weeks after a separate class action was initiated by a Seattle law firm claiming to represent owners of GM products who feel those vehicles have lost value because of GM’s recall blitz.

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Data Doesn’t Back $10 Bil GM Class-Action Lawsuit

“Opportunistic and despicable,” says senior industry analyst.

by on Jun.19, 2014

General Motors CEO Mary Barra during a hearing on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

Calling it “potentially precedent-setting,” a Seattle law firm has filed a class-action lawsuit against General Motors that could, it estimated, expose the automaker to damages of as much as $10 billion for economic losses suffered by owners of GM products.

At the heart of the case, the consumers-rights firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro argues that owners of products such as the Chevrolet Cobalt sedan and sporty Chevy Camaro coupe not only paid more than they should have, but will get back less in trade-in, than they deserve as a result of the troubled Detroit automaker’s rapidly expanding list of safety-related recalls, which has grown to nearly 18 million vehicles this year alone.

The suit was filed on the same day GM CEO Mary Barra returned to Capitol Hill for hearings on the maker’s problems, in particular, the decade-long delay in recalling vehicles equipped with a faulty ignition switch linked to at least 13 deaths. GM also faces an investigation by the Justice Department that could lead to criminal charges and huge fines.

(For more on Barra’s return trip to Washington, Click Here.)

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Keeping Things Honest!

But despite the breadth of its recall problems, and sometimes breathless headlines that has engendered, the new class-action lawsuit appears, at best, to rest on shaky data and emotional appeal. If anything, the numbers generally suggest that the maker’s ongoing recall problems have had little, if any impact on the sale of either its new or used vehicles, nor on the prices consumers have been willing to pay.

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Ignition Switch Victim’s Family Re-files Suit Against GM

Suit alleges engineer lied under oath.

by on May.12, 2014

GM CEO Mary Barra's congressional committee testimony may have led to the most recent lawsuit filed against the maker.

The family of perhaps the best-known of the victims General Motors’ faulty ignition switch, Brooke Melton, is refiling its civil liability suit against the automaker – after agreeing to a settlement earlier.

The filing alleges a GM representative lied about his knowledge of the problem. Lance Cooper and Jere Beasley, attorneys for Ken and Beth Melton, parents of Brooke Melton who died behind the wheel of a 2005 Chevy Cobalt, claim that GM CEO Mary Barra’s assertion that one of the engineers involved in the case may have lied under oath gives them the green light to refile their lawsuit. Barra’s claim came during her testimony in congressional hearings in early April.

In the Know!

“The Meltons would not have settled their case if they had known of the perjury and concealment of critical evidence,” said Cooper, founding partner of the Cooper Firm in Marietta, Ga., in a statement. (more…)

GM Faces Increasing Pressure to Park Recalled Cars

Maker could face challenge coming up with millions of loaners.

by on Apr.04, 2014

Despite GM CEO Mary Barra telling a Senate subcommittee she would let her own son drive one of the 2.5 million recalled vehicles, the company may be forced to ground all of them until they can be repaired.

General Motors is coming under increasing pressure to tell the millions of owners impacted by an ignition switch recall to park those vehicles until it can make the necessary repairs – and a federal judge could order such a step today.

But such move – which is being backed by plaintiffs’ attorneys, as well as several members of the Senate – could create a nightmare for the embattled automaker which would need to scramble to come up with as many as 2.5 million loaner vehicles so owners wouldn’t be left without transportation.

Beyond the Headlines!

GM is so far resisting such a move. While it already has offered to provide loaners for owners who didn’t want to drive any of the recalled cars, CEO Mary Barra told a Senate subcommittee this week that the vehicles are safe as long as there is nothing hanging from the ignition key. (more…)