CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas, April 7, 2014 -- Hilliard Munoz Gonzales LLP (HMG) is the first legal team in the country to secure stipulations from General Motors in which GM admits to defects in recalled vehicles and to fatalities caused by those defects.
STIPULATION FOLLOWS APRIL 4 HEARING
Both parties entered the stipulation following the April 4 hearing in which Bob Hilliard, lead lawyer and partner at HMG, appeared before Federal Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos to argue for an emergency motion requiring GM to tell owners that the recalled cars should not be driven until their ignition switches are replaced.
GM ADMITS DEFECTS IN 1,363,414 VEHICLES
For the first time, GM acknowledges in court that the dangerous defect prompted them to recall certain models manufactured from 2003 to 2007. The stipulation states:
* â€¦The ignition switch torque performance in certain of the Recall Vehicles may not meet GM's specification. â€¦ the ignition switch may â€¦ move from the "run" position to the "accessory" or "off" position with corresponding â€¦ loss of power.
* â€¦The number of vehicles within the Recall manufactured by GM is 1,363,414.
* â€¦On March 28, 2014, GM announced that an additional 824,000 vehicles would be recalled (because they) may have been repaired with replacement ignition switches that do not meet GM's specification. Expected completion date for (repair of) Recall Vehicles is estimated to be October 2014.
* â€¦GM had identified eight frontal-impact crashes â€¦in which the recall condition may have caused or contributed to airbags' non-deployment.
* ...Of these eight crashes, GM had identified four fatalities and six injuries of frontal occupantsâ€¦
* â€¦GM had (further) identified 23 frontal-impact crashes â€¦ Of these crashes, GM had identified six that resulted in eight fatalities of frontal occupants.
SAVE LIVES: PARK THE CARS
Bob Hilliard said during the April 4 Federal Court hearing: "This affects over 2 million vehicles, the defect is severe and lives are being lost. The devastation is heartbreaking and immeasurable. This is a human safety issue that is ongoing.
I would not wish it on anyone in this courtroom on either side of the table. Keep tomorrow's victim alive by making sure these cars are parked."
Judge Ramos gave GM's legal team until April 9th to file their sur-reply to Hilliard's motion.