General Motors is expecting to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy sometime before Friday morning, with the completion of the sale of assets from "Old GM" to "New GM", FOX Business Network is reporting.
Opponents of General Motors Corp.'s plan to sell the bulk of itself to a new government-controlled company faced a noon deadline Thursday to file appeals and find a way to get the sale halted.
GM's lawyers are working to get documents ready to close the sale quickly if the deadline passes and the sale is legally allowed to go through.
A last minute appeal was filed by an unknown plantiff, but it is not expected to block the sale.
"We'll do it as quickly as possible," GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson said Thursday morning.
A press conference with GM CEO Fritz Henderson has been scheduled for Friday at 9am in Detroit.
The sale is the centerpiece of Detroit-based GM's government-endorsed plan to emerge from court oversight. Once it becomes final, the automaker will be largely free to emerge from bankruptcy protection.
Gerber issued a ruling approving the sale late Sunday, but gave its objectors a four-day window to file appeals. The ruling followed a three-day hearing the week before during which attorneys for several groups including argued against its approval.
Some of the most vocal objectors included groups of people with product-related claims against the automaker. Under the current sale plan, liability for claims related to incidents that occurred before GM's bankruptcy filing won't carry over to "new GM."
That means that those people who claim they were injured as a result of a defective GM product before June 1 will be forced to seek compensation from "old GM," the collection of assets and liabilities leftover from the sale, where they will have to fight with the company's other creditors for a share of what's left.
One of the product liability groups filed papers to appeal Gerber's ruling and asked that the appeal be sent directly to the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals for action.
A group of people with asbestos-related claims against GM also filed an appeal, along with a motion in bankruptcy court asking that the sale be put on hold pending action by the U.S. District Court.
Both groups made their arguments in a hearing in front of Gerber late Monday, but the judge denied the motions.
As part of the Obama adminstration-backed sale plan, the U.S. government will get a 60 percent stake in "new GM" in exchange for what's expected to eventually total nearly $50 billion in aid.
The Canadian government, which has also contributed billions in aid, will get a 12.5 percent stake while the United Auto Workers union will take a 17.5 percent share to fund its health care obligations. Unsecured bondholders receive the remaining 10 percent.
Existing GM shareholders are expected to be wiped out.
The remaining pieces of the company, including some closed plants, will become the "Old GM" and will be liquidated over the next few years.
Other major groups opposing the sale include a trio of GM bondholders whose holdings represent less than one percent of the automaker's billions of dollars in unsecured debt. One of the members bought his bonds for just 2 cents on the dollar, while the other two spent no more than 20 cents on the dollar for theirs.
A trio of unions have also objected, charging that health care costs for their retirees will skyrocket if the sale goes through.
The Associated Press contributed to this report