To date, over 235 wrongful death and personal injury claims have been consolidated into a class action lawsuit in New York–all related to faulty ignition switches installed in millions of GM vehicles. Hundreds more similar cases have been settled out of court.
Although the behemoth car company recalled a staggering 2.6 million vehicles in 2014 due to the defective auto part, families around the country are still filing cases regarding accidents and injuries they believed were caused by the dangerous ignition switch.
If you or a loved one has been harmed in a car accident that you believe was caused by a faulty GM ignition switch, it is imperative that you know your rights as well as what you are entitled to under the law.
Speak to an experienced Boston personal injury lawyer from Sweeney Merrigan Law today to learn more about your case and your legal options. We offer free, private consultations to victims and their families. You can call us today at (617) 391-9001 or send us a request form.
Table of Contents
As these cases have been investigated, documents have been uncovered that prove that at least some General Motors employees were aware of malfunctioning ignition switches as far back as 2001–and that the car manufacturer did not take action even after multiple vehicle accidents took place.
The problem with the auto part is that the switch can slip out of place, causing the car engine to stall and cutting power off. This power outage can affect the functioning of the brakes, the steering wheel, and the airbags. Many of the ignition problems result in one-car accidents in which the driver loses control of their vehicle. In other cases, cars without functioning brakes or steering components slam into other vehicles. In instances where airbags do not deploy, drivers and passengers may receive much more severe injuries than if they were protected by airbag safety features.
To date, according to the New York Times, GM has paid over $2 billion in criminal and civil penalties in relation to the faulty switches.
In November 2013, James E. Yingling was commuting to work in his 2006 Saturn Ion sedan near his home in Bedford County, Pennsylvania, when his car’s faulty ignition switch caused the car to shut off and his airbags to become disabled.
As the car approached a T intersection, Yingling was unable to control the malfunctioning car and his car drove off of the road and into a deep ditch. Despite the impact, the car’s airbags did not deploy. Two weeks after the accident, Yingling succumbed to a severe traumatic brain injury, leaving behind a wife and five children.
His wife, Nadia Yingling, sued GM for wrongful death. The defective auto part case was settled out of court.
When a manufacturer recalls a defective and dangerous product, multiple types of lawsuits can be launched at them. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against General Motors seeking compensation for ignition switch-related damages. This recall and the faulty product it affects have impacted consumers in various ways, so plaintiffs have chosen the legal action that suits their needs.
The types of lawsuits being brought against GM include the following:
There were six early bellwether trials for these cases, which are the first of many identical cases to be tried. Bellwether trials help defendants determine whether to settle other cases or challenge them in court. Three of these trials went in GM’s favor, while the other half were privately negotiated with the plaintiff.
If you or a loved one has been harmed in a car accident caused by a faulty ignition switch, you may deserve compensation for damages. This may include:
Our car manufacturers have a responsibility under the law to keep us reasonably safe–and if they did not act after discovering a faulty auto part, they may be found negligent in preventing your auto accident and injuries.
Filing an ignition switch lawsuit against General Motors will not only get you the financial compensation and justice that you deserve, it will also help prevent similar future accidents from taking place.
Stop wondering whether you might have a defective auto parts case and find out once and for all.
Sweeney Merrigan Law is well-suited for cases supporting clients who have been affected by faulty products. Our legal staff includes multiple attorneys with experience in product liability law who can leverage their years of experience to their client’s advantage. Our firm includes attorneys like Jessica M. Gray, Erin E. McHugh, and Matthieu J. Parenteau, who have secured significantly sized resolutions during their careers.
We want to hear your story and help you understand your options for legal action. We invite you and your family to a confidential, complimentary consultation with an experienced car accident attorney. During this meeting, we can answer all of your questions, take a look at the evidence in your case, and guide you toward the next, best step.
Sweeney Merrigan Law, LLP is a highly successful personal injury law firm serving Massachusetts since 2011.
There are no fees or costs unless we win your case!