GM Injury Claims Deadline ExtendedNovember 18, 2014
Victims of accidents stemming from defective ignition switches were informed that the deadline for filing GM injury claims has been extended from December 31, 2014 to January 31, 2015. Kenneth Feinberg, the attorney overseeing the GM injury claims process, announced that the company is extending the deadline and additional 30 days. The company also announced that it has sent 850,000 letters to current and past owners of the more than 2.6 million vehicles affected by the ignition switch recall.
GM Injury Claims Could Cost Millions
Mr. Feinberg announced yesterday that the company has received more than 2,100 GM injury claims, including 217 related to fatal injuries and 128 for serious non-fatal accidents. The company has paid out 33 death claims, with each claim costing the company at least $1 million. Nearly 300 GM injury claims are still under review. GM previously announced that it expects to spend $400 million paying off these claims, but that amount could rise to as much as $600 million.
Senator Criticizes GM Injury Claims Deadline
Although Mr. Feinberg announced an extension to the GM injury claims deadline, a U.S. Senator has complained about the need for a deadline at all. U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) told the media that the company should “modify, if not eliminate, these arbitrary compensation fund deadlines.” Senator Blumenthal also said that victims need more time to decide if they want to file GM injury claims in court or accept payouts from the company’s claims fund. He stated that accident victims will be better equipped to make such a choice when the results of the company’s bankruptcy proceeding and the Department of Justice investigation are released to the public.
Report: Half of GM Injury Claims Have No Documentation
The GM injury claims administrator publicized the numbers of claims and how the fund ruled on their findings. Of the 2,105 GM injury claims submitted, 1,106 reportedly had no documentation, 205 were ruled ineligible, 430 are currently deficient, and 292 are under review. Out of 217 death claims, 33 have been paid, 31 have been ruled ineligible, 77 were deemed deficient, 49 had no documentation and 27 are under review.
GM Injury Claims Without Documentation Risk Rejection
The report also stated that 10 percent of the GM injury claims submitted have been rejected, largely due to lack of documentation. The totals from the recent report show that most of the serious GM injury claims and death claims had little to no documentation. These claims risk rejection by the claims administrator. Victims without documentation would need to go through the legal system to gain compensation, but they would find it difficult to make a strong case without sufficient documentation to substantiate their claims.
Source: Detroit News
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