Somewhat to my surprise, I could not find, in a Google search I ran earlier today, a good online explanation of the bankruptcy law issues pertaining to the extent of "New GM's" liability, if any, "for at least 31 crashes and 13 deaths"
resulting from an ignition defect that may have been concealed from the outside world until well after government-controlled New GM's purchase of the operating business of General Motors in 2009. So I thought I would write one.According to a helpful timeline NPR pulled together (see above link), all of the design and/or manufacturing defects, and internal awareness of the defect, occurred long before "old GM" (now known as Motors Liquidation Company) commenced its chapter 11 case in 2009. This means that any tort claims arising from the defect were pre-petition claims and their creditors, to the extent old GM gave them legally adequate notice of the asset transfer to new GM are bound by the Bankruptcy Court's order approving that sale. The general rule on notice is that claimants known to old GM should have been sent actual notice in the mail, and widespread publication would bind claimants unknown to old GM (those who had sustained an injury but not yet sued or demanded a payment outside of a lawsuit). Tort claimants were very active active in the bankruptcy case and even took appeals of the Sale Order to the U.S.