At least 50 people have been killed by defective General Motors ignition switches.

Kenneth Feinberg, the administrator contracted by GM to handle claims from motorists in the wake of its safety crisis, released the latest death figure Monday. His update comes as the deadline to submit claims arrives on January 31.

So far, Feinberg has deemed only a fraction of the claims as eligible for compensation. According to his figures, he has approved 50 of 338 death claims and 75 of 2,730 injury claims. But not all those claims have been fully reviewed. Many are still being vetted, making it possible that Feinberg's numbers could considerably rise.

A deputy in Feinberg's office told the Associated Press they expected a flurry of new claims in the days leading up to the deadline, but his final numbers may not be known for several months. He is awaiting additional documentation on some claims, and has said it could take three to six months before all claims are evaluated.


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