When General Motors began addressing the ignition switch debacle earlier this year, it estimated that 13 people had died due to its negligence in replacing the faulty component. That figure, however, has more than doubled by now.

According to Bloomberg, Kenneth Feinberg – the attorney whom GM appointed to oversee its compensation fund, much as he had done for 9/11 and BP Deepwater Horizon victims – has already approved 27 payouts for deaths resulting from the faulty ignition switches, representing a significant increase over the original 13 and the 19 reported just last month.

That number looks poised to rise even further as Feinberg and his team evaluate a further 151 fatality claims. To date the fund has reportedly received 1,371 claims, of which the vast majority (1,193) are for non-fatal injuries.

The fund has approximately half a billion dollars allocated to it (give or take a hundred million) to be dispersed at Feinberg's discretion. The most clear-cut cases are set to be processed within 90 days of application, while the more complicated cases could take up to 180 days to evaluate. The first claims were accepted on August 1.


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