KENNETH J. ALLEN LAW GROUP - INJURY ATTORNEYS
Illinois and Indiana Personal Injury Lawyers and Attorneys Trial and Civil Litigation Law Firm.
Accident & Injury Law
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Those three words best describe the driving forces behind Kenneth J. Allen Law Group. Our firm is devoted exclusively to the practice of Accident and Injury Law, and exclusively to the people - not corporations - seriously hurt or killed in incidents as varied as on-the-job accidents, semi-truck crashes, injuries from a defective product, or loss of life because of a doctor's medical malpractice.
As the only multi-state law firm in Valparaiso Indiana, Merrillville Indiana, Indianapolis Indiana, Northwest Indiana, Chicagoland, Joliet Illinois, Tinley Park Illinois, Chicago Illinois accepting serious injury and wrongful death cases, exclusively, Kenneth J. Allen Law Group is experienced and knowledgeable in the details and procedures that can make or break a case.
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The recalls from General Motors Corporation (GM) just keep coming and within the news releases from the GM CEO, it’s assumed that more GM recalls are coming in the near future. This week, for instance, the car maker issued another recall announcement where SIX additional recalls of its vehicles are issued.
This week’s recall announcement alone would be a major recall. GM recalled 7.6 million GM vehicles — and especially concerning about this week’s GM Recall was the revelation that cars made and sold almost 20 years ago are dangerous.
That’s right. For almost two decades, GM has been selling cars, and the American public has been buying GM cars (and trucks and minivans) that we now know to be defective and unsafe.
1997 – 2005 Chevy Malibu and 2003 – 2014 Cadillac CTS Recalls
Specifically, the Chevrolet Malibu has been recalled for model years 1997 through 2005 in this recall. Also, the Cadillac CTS model years 2003 through 2014 has been recalled. Why? Both the Chevy Malibu and the Cadillac CTS have “unintended ignition key rotation” — which is dangerous and a potentially deadly defect.
In fact, this ignition switch problem is the same product defect that resulted in some of the other MILLIONS of GM model vehicles being recalled in the past few months. It is this same ignition switch defect that forms the basis of the controversial GM “victims compensation fund” that was announced this week, providing settlement offers to some GM car owners (not all, and not for every situation).
Check Your General Motors Vehicle Here Using Your VIN
If you can find the vehicle identification number for the GM model (hint: if not in or on the car, check your insurance paperwork, auto insurance policies will have the VIN), then you can go online and check to see if your General Motors vehicle has been recalled.
What Does This Mean? Millions of Crash Claims and Accident Causes May Be Reexamined for GM Liability
As more and more General Motors cars and GM trucks and GM minivans get recalled, the time period for these model years seems to be increasing. It is shocking to consider that models like the beloved Chevy Malibu (so popular that if you haven’t owned one, you know someone who has) have been dangerously defective since 1997.
Which means that wrecks have happened because of these product defects over the years and there may be claims paid and verdicts issued where the fault was not found to lie with General Motors. We wrote earlier about the Texas driver who had a felony conviction on her record after a fatal car crash involving a GM car, where no one knew the GM vehicle defect had caused the accident and the resulting death of her passenger (and fiance).
Now, she is in the process of pursuing justice against GM and getting that criminal record erased. See: “GM Recalls: What is General Motors’ Liability for Crashes Going Back 10 Years?”
Her story will be among many others where GM has evaded justice in car crashes and traffic accidents for years as these serious car defects were not revealed to the public and GM just kept selling cars.
Products Liability Law Exists for Justice
In both Indiana and Illinois, state products liability personal injury law provides the basis for victims of defective products, like these GM vehicles and the dangerous components within them, to find justice from the businesses that chose profits over people.
If you have questions regarding a GM recall issue, then please feel free to contact our offices for more information.
You can also read our past coverages of this evolving GM Recall Crisis, including details on what cars are involved in the various recalls:
- GM Recalls Millions of GM Cars and SUVs: Congress Is Investigating while Justice Department Begins Criminal Investigation – Is Your GM Car Dangerous?
- GM Recall: GM Ignition Switch Dangers Grow – Moves to Stop People from Driving these Cars, Get Victims’ Claims Recognized
- RECALLS JUST KEEP HAPPENING: CAR MAKERS LIKE GENERAL MOTORS MAY BE RESPONSIBLE FOR MANY, MANY SERIOUS INJURIES AND DEATHS
Recalls happen every day in this country – all sorts of products are either voluntarily recalled by their manufacturer, or recalls are issued by the government to get dangerous items out of the public marketplace. Consider this — this week, so far, the following national recalls have happened:
- Stouffer’s Frozen Lasagna has been recalled by Nestle Food Company because some of its product can make people with fish allergies sick.
- Hospira is recalling some of its Morphine Sulfate Injection because they have more than the appropriate dosage.
- Office Depot is recalling desk chairs because they have a dangerous fall hazard.
It is very good news for all American consumers that manufacturers issue these voluntary recalls of their products when it is discovered that the product can hurt or seriously injure (even kill) someone. Of course, there are those who will point out that this is in the manufacturer’s best interests, since they are legally liable for any injuries that their products cause.
And this is true. Under state law as well as federal statute, manufacturers of products as well as those in the distribution chain (those who had the task of getting the product from its maker to the injury victim) can be held financially responsible for the injuries caused by a defective and damaged product.
This is what is referred to as products liability law. Many recalls have become the basis for major personal injury litigation based upon products liability laws, where state legislatures (like those in Indiana and Illinois) as well as the U.S. Congress, have passed laws for safe products that have been violated. Consider this — this week, the following recalls are now among those making national news as they proceed as major products liability personal injury lawsuits:
- This week, a wrongful death lawsuit has been filed by the parents of a baby whose death inspired a national recall. Johnson & Johnson and subsidiary McNeil PPC have been sued by the grieving parents of their 2-month-old infant son, Markus Cherry, who died after being given Concentrated Tylenol Infant Drops (which was later found to have been defective, as it contained harmful bacteria). Baby Markus’ death led to the national recall of 40 different types ofinfants’ and children’s medications. This is probably not the only lawsuit that will spring from this recall.
- Yesterday, it was announced that the parents of a 2 year old little boy had settled their wrongful death lawsuit – although at least ten (10) other similar cases remain active – after they filed a wrongful death action against Triad Group and its sister company, H&P Industries, claiming that their son Harry Kothari died because of Triad’s defective product, contaminated baby wipes. Triad and H&P did issue a voluntarily recall after little Harry died from contaminated wipes and swabs containing harmful bacteria. The Food and Drug Administration also shut down the Triad plant after U.S. Marshals entered and seized $6 million worth of products.
- Defective products made and recalled by DePuy Orthopaedics are now the subject of over 3500 different lawsuits, as victims of its defective ASR hip implants are joined together in multi district litigation before an Ohio federal district court, with trial predicted to start soon. We’ve been monitoring those hip replacement product lawsuits for awhile now, see our earlier post that provides details.
BIGGEST DRUG COMPANY SETTLEMENT IN US HISTORY MADE BY GLAXOSMITHKLINE FOR DIABETES-DRUG AVANDIA AND OTHER CLAIMS
t’s not a done deal yet, but that may just be paperwork at this point because everyone seems to acknowledge that GlaxoSmithKline has settled its claims with the federal government to the tune of $3 billion, which beats the old record of $2.3 billion paid by Pfizer back in 2009 in settlement with the feds for violating the law in marketing some of its drugs for uses other than what was instructed on their labels.
GlaxoSmithKline will be paying $3,000,000,000 to the government to settle a bunch of claims of illegal activity: Medicaid reimbursement hijinks; promoting its drugs for off-label uses; and some strange things in particular about its cash cow drug, Avandia, which was said to help people suffering with diabetes but was revealed by medical researchers to be connected to an almost 50% increase in the chance of a heart attack and an even higher risk of dying from heart problems.
Key: Mayo Clinic investigations revealed that almost every single scientist (90%) who published papers that supported the use of Avandia in humans had financial connections with GlaxoSmithKline. (For more details on Avandia issues, please refer to our earlier post).
The Biggest Drug Company Settlement In History Isn’t High Enough
Billions of dollars in settlement sounds like a serious deal, a financial hit that should make the drug company think twice about doing things like this in the future. GlaxoSmithKline has this cash on hand, and has already informed its shareholders that the settlement will be paid by cash in the bank.
That’s right: GSK has $3 billion setting around to pay the U.S. Department of Justice when the paperwork is signed, no surprise when GlaxoSmithKline is reported to have a market value in excess of $110,000,000,000.00.
So who really won here?
Many will argue the drug company did. The lesson learned: drugs are products manufactured and marketed for profit in this country just like cars and boats and smartphones and coffeemakers. Americans cannot blindly trust that the products that they bring into their homes are safe to use or consume.
If you or a loved one has reason to think that you may have been harmed by a drug or drug-related product, then it is important to get medical help first and legal help as well.That’s what products liability law does – and maybe, in the future, an American jury will explain to big drug companies that putting profits over people is just plain wrong.