The first of six bellwether civil GM ignition switch lawsuits is now being heard in a Manhattan Federal District Court.
The results of these six trials will play a critical part for both plaintiffs and the defense in determining the best legal strategies for future suits.
The trials will also be imperative for determining whether or not GM is liable and should therefore be required to pay out settlements.
The term bellwether is derived from a Middle English word meaning first or leader, and refers to the practice of placing a bell around the neck of a ram that led a flock of sheep.
About Bellwether Cases
Bellwether cases may be used when a number of plaintiffs have similar claims (lawsuits) related to a product liability issue.
For GM’s faulty ignition switch claims, six bellwether cases will be heard initially; three have been chosen by the plaintiffs attorneys, and three have been chosen by GM’s defense attorneys.
The bellwether cases may assist both defense and plaintiffs attorneys in making legal decisions regarding future trials and how to best settle future claims.
Details Of The First GM Ignition Switch Suit
The first bellwether lawsuit stems from a May 2014 car accident in which a driver sustained severe injuries that were allegedly caused by a faulty ignition switch.
The driver of a 2003 Saturn Ion hit a tree, yet his airbags did not deploy, presumably due to a defective ignition. Because the vehicles airbags did not work properly, the driver suffered serious injuries to his neck and back.
While GM was made aware of its vehicles faulty ignition switches in 2001, it did not begin issuing recalls until 2014.
The plaintiff in this case received notice that his vehicle was being recalled in early May 2014. However, due to a shortage of replacement parts, he was told by a GM dealership that his vehicle could not be repaired until June. His accident took place on May 28, 2014.
GM needs to be held accountable for the countless injuries, deaths, and property damage caused by its malfunctioning ignition switches.
If you or a loved one has suffered due to an accident caused by this faulty product, you may be entitled to join a class action lawsuit.
The personal injury lawyers at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy can assist you with pursuing your claim to help ensure you receive the justice and financial compensation you deserve.