Robert Hilliard, attorney for the families, told Reuters (Sept 25, 2014) that the crash victims' families accepted compensation awards just days after the first offers were made. Two teenage girls, Amy Rademaker and Natasha Weigel, were killed eight years ago in a crash involving a 2005 Chevy Cobalt. The families of the girls had sued GM in Minnesota state court in March, claiming that the motor vehicle company knew about the ignition switch defect for more than a decade but failed to fix the vehicles.
Hilliard didn’t disclose how much compensation will be received in this program, but he did say that the amounts offered to his clients were fair.The program stipulates that any person who accepts a compensation offer must waive the right to sue GM over the crash.
According to Reuters, 21 death claims had been deemed eligible as of September 19th and verbal cash offers have been made to 15 eligible claimants. Each eligible death claim will be awarded at least $1 million.
From the 2.6 million vehicles recalled by GM for defective ignition switches since the beginning of this year, 850 injury and death claims have been filed with the GM compensation program. GM has set aside $400 million to cover the costs of the compensation program, and the company will accept claims until Dec. 31.