Chevy Bolt owners who opt for rebates must waive right to sue over battery fires

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When GM quietly confirmed last month that it would offer rebates to owners who had purchased a Chevrolet Bolt EV just prior to its price being slashed by $6,000 for the 2023 model year, it seemed like a solid move by a manufacturer attempting to do right by its customers. However, as in any business arrangement, there's a catch — you have to sign away your right to sue if your battery pack decides to commit an act of self-immolation.

An owner who found this out first-hand in the process of applying for the rebate flagged Jalopnik with the details. In the fine print of the rebate agreement, the owner (and anybody who has ever met them, apparently) must "forever waive and release all claims, damages, or causes of action." Here's the full legalese:

By nonetheless agreeing to this Release, I—both on my own behalf and on behalf of my heirs, agents, servants, beneficiaries, legal representatives, assigns, wards, executors, successors, and administrators—forever waive and release all claims, damages, or causes of action, either known or unknown, regardless of the legal or equitable theory, that I may have now or in the future arising out of or in any way relating to my Bolt vehicle(s), the battery defect, or the battery recalls, and including any claims or rights that I may have in connection with the class action, including any right to participate as a class member. This release is in favor of and includes General Motors Company, General Motors LLC, General Motors Holdings LLC, LG Chem, Ltd., LG Energy Solution, Ltd., LG Energy Solution Michigan Inc., LG Electronics, Inc., and LG Electronics USA, Inc. as well as all of their respective officers, directors, agents, employees, servants, subsidiaries, affiliated companies, subsidiaries, parent companies, insurers, authorized dealers, suppliers, divisions, predecessors, successors, heirs, and assigns.

The "goodwill" gesture applied to vehicles from the 2020, 2021 and 2022 model years that were purchased (not leased) in 2022, when automotive purchase incentives were at their lowest. The rebate amount depends on a few factors like model year and trim level. A Bolt forum user posted an example of the letter they received when the program was first implemented.

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