Chrysler poised to close sale, exit Chapter 11

Associated Press
Wednesday, June 10, 2009

NEW YORK (AP) — With opponents of Chrysler's planned partnership with Italy's Fiat having exhausted their appeals, the Obama administration-backed sale could close early Wednesday — putting the automaker close to its goal of a speedy exit from bankruptcy protection.
Late Tuesday, the Supreme Court cleared the way for the sale of the bulk of Chrysler LLC's assets to Fiat Group SpA, rejecting an appeal by a trio of Indiana pension and construction funds, consumer groups and others to block the transaction.

Consumer groups and individuals with product-related lawsuits also contested a condition of the Chrysler sale that would release the company from product liability claims related to vehicles it sold before the asset sale to Fiat. Compensation for such claims would have to come from the parts of the company not being sold to Fiat. But those assets have limited value and it's unlikely there will be anything to pay out.
"The Chrysler and GM bankruptcy plans will take away the the public's right to hold these companies accountable for when their defective cars injure and kill people, which is the incentive that has forced such car companies to recall defective vehicles," said Joanne Doroshow, of the Center for Justice & Democracy, in a statement.

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