Kyle Johnson
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GM is Being Sued For $10 Billion

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The news that GM is now the target of a potential $10 billion lawsuit is almost enough to make you feel sorry for them…and then you read another headline about how the company basically ruined Courtland Kelley’s career for having the gall to suggest that defective ignition switches could be a deadly problem and then suing under the whistleblower law when his pleas went ignored. And reading that makes you feel decidedly not sorry. More like angry, in fact. So, no, you shouldn’t feel in any way sad that GM is being sued for $10 billion.

GM is being sued for $10 billion

2006 Chevy Cobalt

The lawsuit was filed today in a California court and claims that the damage done to the brand’s reputation will make it more difficult for GM vehicle owners to sell their cars and likely take a considerable chunk out of their resale values. Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro is looking for payouts between $500 and $2,600 for about 15 million car and truck owners, many of whom drive vehicles not affected by the ever-expanding ignition switch recall.

“GM’s egregious and widely publicized conduct and the never-ending and piecemeal nature of GM’s recalls has so tarnished the affected vehicles that no reasonable consumer would have paid the price they did when the GM brand meant safety and success,” the complaint states.

Additionally, the treatment of potential whistleblowers like Kelley and the insistence on moving away from terms such as “defective” and “debilitating” is deemed by the lawsuit as “Orwellian [in] fashion.”

Anna Andrews of La Quinta, California is the plaintiff in the suit. She alleges that she would not have purchased her 2010 Buick LaCrosse had she known of the various defects in GM-manufactured vehicles. Why anyone would want to drive a 2010 Buick LaCrosse in the first place is beyond me, but I digress.

Wisely, the lawsuit applies to anyone who purchased or leased a GM car between July 1, 2009 and April 2014. This eliminates any possibility of GM cowering behind its bankruptcy shield, putting the blame for nondisclosure squarely on the shoulders of New GM. Whether families of the 13 or more victims who died in GM vehicles with faulty ignition switches will be properly compensated remains to be seen.

Regardless of whether the final settlement approaches $10 billion or not, it’s pretty likely that GM is going to end up paying out quite a bit of money for their misdeeds.

Almost makes you feel sorry for them…until you remember that they basically owe America $11.2 billion anyway. And reading that makes you feel decidedly not sorry. More like angry, in fact.

Source: Reuters