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General Motors 130 articles

Justice Department Appoints Kenneth Feinberg To Administer New Terrorism Victim Fund

The U.S. Justice Department has appointed lawyer Kenneth Feinberg, often referred to as the “compensation fund czar,” to administer a new fund established by Congress to help victims of state-sponsored terrorism. The “United States Victims of State Sponsors of Terrorism Fund” will provide significant relief for victims of state-sponsored terrorist attacks, such as the 1998 American embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, the October 1983 bombing of the Marine Corps barracks in Beirut, and possibly the Americans taken hostage from the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in 1979. In the past, Mr. Feinberg has administered compensation funds for the victims of ... Read More

GM Settles Third Ignition Switch Bellwether Case Ahead of Trial

General Motors (GM) has settled the third of six lawsuits picked to be tried as bellwether cases for deaths and injuries stemming from its defective ignition switches, which put millions of its vehicles at risk of suddenly losing power and crashing without airbag protection. GM’s lawyers filed a letter in federal court in Manhattan Thursday saying it had entered into a confidential settlement with plaintiff Nadia Yingling, who sued the automaker in 2013 after her husband James was killed when his 2006 Saturn Ion lost power and crashed on a Pennsylvania highway. Ms. Yingling’s case had been set to go ... Read More

Whistleblowers Can Help Their Companies Avoid Catastrophe

Thanks to stronger protections and incentives,” life is getting better” for corporate whistleblowers who call out corruption, fraud, and other wrongdoing, The Economist reports. Still, many big companies prefer to punish whistleblower rather than praise them, failing to see how whistleblowers can sometimes avoid costly errors and even save the company from itself. Recent examples proving this point, as The Economist reported this week, are the troubles bearing down on German automaker Volkswagen and Japanese airbag manufacturer Takata. Both companies have become have become bogged under allegations of massive fraud that threaten the companies’ image and financial health. Had either ... Read More

Woman injured, trapped in Chevy Malibu sues GM for failure of safety systems

A woman seriously injured and trapped in her 2009 Chevrolet Malibu for more than a week after careening off the road has filed a federal lawsuit against General Motors (GM) alleging the company knew about the failure of safety systems with her vehicle but failed to correct the problem. In an interview with Good Morning America, Kristin Hopkins claims her Malibu lost traction while driving on a stretch of highway in Colorado in April 2014. Her car tumbled down an embankment and came to rest upside down in a ravine about 140 feet from the road. She broke five ribs, fractured ... Read More

GM announces SUV recall due to defective windshield wipers that may catch fire

General Motors (GM), the infamous company behind the ignition switch recall, has announced a recall encompassing about 32,000 Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse and GMC Acadia SUVs from the 2016 model year for a severe issue with the windshield wipers. The defective wipers may short out during use, potentially causing the wiper motor to malfunction and catch fire. The windshield wiper defect was discovered after one of the wiper motors malfunctioned on a car in a Lansing, Mich., factory earlier this year. As a result of GM’s newly founded “Speak up for Safety” program, the automaker immediately initiated an investigation to learn the ... Read More

VW Emissions Cheat Should Spur Passage of Auto Industry Whistleblower Law

Driven by General Motors’ deadly ignition switch disaster and the record number of safety recalls in the auto industry last year, the U.S. Senate began pushing for the support of a new bill designed to encourage whistleblowers in the auto industry to speak out by offering strong whistleblower protections and incentives. Now, after Volkswagen‘s recent admission that it programmed its diesel-powered TDI model to cheat on emissions tests, there are suddenly millions more reasons why the bipartisan Motor Vehicle Whistleblower Act should pass the House of Representatives. The hugely successful False Claims Act whistleblower provisions, which have helped the U.S. ... Read More

GM To Pay $900-Million Criminal Fine To End Ignition Switch Probe

General Motors (GM) has reached a deal with federal prosecutors requiring the automaker to pay $900 million to settle criminal charges related to its mishandling and cover-up of defective ignition switches, which have been linked to at least 124 deaths and many more injuries. The settlement tentatively concludes the Justice Department’s year-long criminal probe into GM’s botched and illegal responses to its deadly ignition switch flaws, which affected 2.6 million vehicles. Rather than issue prompt, potentially life-saving recalls when it first recognized the problem more than a decade ago, GM instead concealed the problem and denied it existed. Under the ... Read More

Driver’s Manslaughter Conviction Overturned, GM Ignition Switch Blamed

A woman who was thrown in jail for causing a 2012 car crash that killed her passed has had her criminal convictions reversed by a Pennsylvania judge who found GM’s faulty ignition switch was to blame for the accident. LaKisha Ward-Green, 25, of Ward-Hills, Penn., was driving her 2007 Chevrolet Cobalt when she swerved to avoid a vehicle and hit a pole, then bounced back into the road where her car struck a school bus. The impact instantly killed 16-year-old Robert Chambers IV, whom Ms. Ward-Green had picked up from school. The car’s airbags did not deploy. Ms. Ward-Green was arrested ... Read More

Alleging ignition-switch cover-up, plaintiffs seek GM’s legal communications

Plaintiffs seeking documented communications between General Motors and its lawyers urged a New York federal judge Thursday to order GM to release the documents, arguing the automaker and its lawyers conspired to commit fraud to conceal a deadly ignition switch defect and therefore should not be allowed to hide their misconduct behind attorney-client privilege. Plaintiffs’ lawyers singled out three cases demonstrating how GM and its attorneys allegedly lied and buried evidence that it knew the ignition switches in millions of its cars were unsafe – actions that constitute a crime or fraud as defined by the crime-fraud exception to the ... Read More

Takata airbag victims may be better served by court litigation, not compensation fund

Takata officials are considering the feasibility of creating a compensation fund for victims of its defective airbags, which have been installed in some 34 million vehicles and can explode in the most minor of accidents, spaying vehicle occupants with metal shrapnel. The idea for such a fund comes naturally amid large-scale and costly disasters, such as General Motors’ defective ignition switch crisis and the BP oil spill, but plaintiffs’ lawyers say that such a fund may not be suitable in Takata’s case. Japan-based Takata Corp. finally agreed in May to recall about 34 million vehicles affected by the flawed airbags. ... Read More