GM offers victims more than $1 million
General Motors offered at least $1 million Monday to the families of those who died as a result of a defect in GM cars.
The automaker will give another $300,000 for each surviving spouse and dependent, in addition to a sum of money that will be determined by the victims' earning potential.
GM also said that it will not cap the total amount of money it will pay to the compensation fund.
At least 13 people died, and many more were injured as result of a faulty ignition switch installed in 2.6 million GM cars.
The automaker is also offering money to those injured in crashes that were caused by the defect in the cars.
Attorney Kenneth Feinberg, who devised compensation plans for victims after 9/11 and the BP oil spill, issued the details at a press conference Monday, about four months after GM recalled the affected vehicles. He was hired by G (GM)in April as a consultant.
To illustrate how his plan would be implemented, Feinberg offered some examples. He said the family of a married 25-year-old who had two children and was earning $46,400 would receive a total award of $4 million under his protocol.
More deaths will be counted. Feinberg would not speculate Monday as to the actual number of deaths or injuries caused by the faulty switch. But he did say that he would count deaths that weren't included in GM's original list of 13.
Until now, the automaker only counted deaths caused by frontal crashes where airbags didn't deploy. Feinberg said Monday that people killed in side-impact crashes or in the backseat will count even though they wouldn't have been helped by an airbag.
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