General Motors Class Action Lawsuit Filed Over Ignition Switch Recall

A class action lawsuit against General Motors has been filed by several Pennsylvania residents as a result of the recent ignition switch recall, alleging that the auto maker wrongfully concealed problems from vehicle owners for years, negatively impacting the value of their vehicles.  

The complaint (PDF) was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania on April 8, seeking class action status to include claims for all owners of vehicles impacted by the massive recall.

According to allegations raised in the GM ignition switch class action lawsuit, which was filed by Austin DePalma, Bob and Dorothy McCann, and Paul J. Pollastro, vehicle owners and federal safety regulators were misled by General Motors for years about the safety and quality of the vehicles.

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GM Ignition Recall Lawsuits

In 2014, GM Recalled 2.6M Vehicles Due to Risk of Airbag Failure from Defective Ignition Switches.

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In February, GM first announced it was recalling nearly 800,000 vehicles in the U.S. due to problems with ignition switches that could turn the vehicle off if jarred or if heavy keys were used in the ignition. This switches off the air bags, which fail to deploy when needed in an auto accident.

That recall has since been expanded to include more than 2.5 million vehicles worldwide, with GM admitting it knew about the ignition switch problem for years without acting.

A growing number of GM recall lawsuits are being filed in state and federal courts throughout the United States, including personal injury claims, wrongful death claims, investor lawsuits and other class actions over the diminished value of the vehicles.

While GM has indicated that at least 13 deaths may have occurred due to airbag failures caused by the faulty ignition switch, outside experts suggest that many more serious injuries and deaths appear to have occurred. A report by the Center for Automobile Safety suggested that more than 300 deaths have been reported to federal regulators following accidents involving some of the recalled vehicles where airbags failed to deploy.

According to allegations raised in the class action, GM has known about the problem and actively tried to conceal the issue by blaming incidents on driver error.

GM CEO Mary Barra went before congress twice last week to explain the company’s actions, testifying that she did not know why the recalls were not announced earlier, but promised to provide lawmakers with answers in the near future.

A congressional investigation also revealed that officials inside the NHTSA called for investigations into the problem twice since 2007, but were twice told there was no need by other officials in the agency.

3 Comments

  • MaryMarch 12, 2015 at 7:24 am

    I flipped over my Chevy Trailblazer and the airbags did not deploy and the key was stuck in ignition and onstar did not work.

  • KarenJune 6, 2014 at 12:10 am

    Fourteen days ago My brothers Abs brakes failed on his 2001 Chevy Sierra Pick up. He was driving down a hill .. Found out it has a recall in 2005 . He has 47 fractures He is going to have to be in the hospital for months...and its going to take months for him to be able to walk again. The air bag never well off !!! I don't understand why this is happening ?? How many other call out their are u[Show More]Fourteen days ago My brothers Abs brakes failed on his 2001 Chevy Sierra Pick up. He was driving down a hill .. Found out it has a recall in 2005 . He has 47 fractures He is going to have to be in the hospital for months...and its going to take months for him to be able to walk again. The air bag never well off !!! I don't understand why this is happening ?? How many other call out their are unsafe to drive ???

  • kattyaJune 1, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    My husband owned a 2005 cobalt and got into an accident the car was a total loss and the airbags never deployed. The front was smashed also other parts when we contacted GM asking why the airbags never deployed they told us that there could be many reasons but that it may not have hit a sensor. I do not know how a sensor would not have been set off for the airbags to deploy but after reading about[Show More]My husband owned a 2005 cobalt and got into an accident the car was a total loss and the airbags never deployed. The front was smashed also other parts when we contacted GM asking why the airbags never deployed they told us that there could be many reasons but that it may not have hit a sensor. I do not know how a sensor would not have been set off for the airbags to deploy but after reading about this recall I do believe that this is the reason why and am very unhappy to know that they knew about it and were covering it up. I don't know how my husband walked away from that accident and not too happy to find out that the car was sold to us with defects! we now own a 2007 Pontiac G6 and are waiting on a recall letter for that car also!

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