A look at the laywer General Motors has hired to help settle claims

WXYZ Detroit
Tuesday, April 15, 2014

General Motors has hired Ken Feinberg to handle claims connected to the now famous cars with defective ignition switches. 

Feinberg has handled several high-profile disasters from 9-11, to mass shootings at Virginia Tech, Colorado and Connecticut, to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and the Boston Marathon bombings just last year. 

Feinberg has been called the "Master of Disaster" because he handles millions of dollars in compensation funds for victims.   Feinberg's work in the oil spill case led to not just criticism but legal action to open his contract with BP Petroleum brought by the Center for Justice and Democracy at New York Law School

The center director spoke with 7 Action News on how GM and Feinberg can get it right in this crisis.  GM has recalled 2.6 million cars that were involved in accidents that killed at least 13 people and injured dozens of others. 

During hearings in Congress, GM CEO Mary Barra has promised transparency in the corporation moving forward with how the company knew of defect problems for a decade and how it will treat victims. 

The company has secretly settled some cases and has also been hit with class action lawsuits.  GM also has some protection against claims prior to going into bankruptcy in 2009.  The compensation fund could pay those early victims.

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