Volkswagen & Audi Dieselgate Vehicles Sold Before Sept. 18, 2015
On October 3, 2018, U.S. District Judge Charles R. Breyer issued an order allowing the RICO and state law claims of consumers who sold their affected vehicles prior to the disclosure of the fraud to continue. The order upholds the claims of tens of thousands of prior owners of affected diesel vehicles that Bosch and Volkswagen participated in a conspiracy to create and implement an emissions cheating defeat device in nearly 600,000 cars sold in the United States. Plaintiffs allege the Dieselgate fraud harmed all purchasers of affected vehicles (whether or not they still owned the cars when the fraud was disclosed) because they: (1) paid a premium and/or financing fees for features that they never received; and (2) the premiums caused their vehicles to depreciate more than cars without the premium diesel features would have depreciated over the same period of ownership. Judge Breyer agreed, finding that Plaintiffs had adequately alleged Article III standing to bring their claims. In his order, Breyer stated that the claims on behalf of prior owners were based on a “novel twist” and that plaintiffs “plausibly alleged that Bosch partnered with Volkswagen to implement the defeat device in the affected vehicles, and by doing so participated in the conduct of a years-long enterprise to defraud U.S. regulators and consumers.” Judge Breyer rejected Bosch’s arguments that its actions were not a direct and proximate cause of Plaintiffs’ injuries and concluded: “Plaintiffs’ allegations are sufficient to support that Bosch engaged in racketeering activity in violation of RICO, and that Plaintiffs suffered a concrete injury to their property ‘by reason’ of this activity. The RICO claims against Bosch are well pled.” Judge Breyer also rejected Volkswagen’s arguments that federal law preempted the state law claims against it for misrepresenting the virtues of its diesel cars and concealing the defeat devices. While the Court ordered Plaintiffs to replead their misrepresentation claims with more particularity, Judge Breyer held that the omission-based claims would go forward as pled.
Did you sell your CleanDiesel vehicle before news of the scandal broke on 9/18/15?
If you sold your VW/Audi/Porsche CleanDiesel before 9/18/15, you may be entitled to compensation.
Hagens Berman believes that the roughly $17 billion in settlements that came from the Dieselgate litigation offered remedy to hundreds of thousands of owners, but failed to compensate many front-line victims of VW’s scheme – owners who unwittingly drove hyper-polluting cars for years, but had disposed of the cars before the scheme imploded.
Those who sold their affected VW, Audi or Porsche vehicles before Dieselgate news broke suffered some of the same harm as those who kept their vehicles throughout the litigation – sellers never received the performance and CleanDiesel advantage that VW marketed, and that they paid for.
2012-15 VW Beetle TDI
2012-15 VW Beetle Convertible TDI
2010-15 VW Golf TDI
2015 VW Golf Sportwagen TDI
2009-15 VW Jetta TDI
2009-14 VW Jetta Sportwagen TDI
2012-15 VW Passat TDI
2010-15 Audi A3 2.0L
2009-16 VW Touareg TDI 3.0L
2014-16 Audi A6 Quattro 3.0L
2009-16 Audi Q7 3.0L
2014-16 Audi A8 3.0L
2014-16 Audi A8L 3.0L
2014-16 Audi Q5 3.0L
2014-16 Audi A7 Quattro 3.0L
ABOUT VW's EMISSIONS FRAUD
The EPA determined that the software installed in these vehicles – called a “defeat device” – only turns on full emissions controls when the car is being tested, but otherwise shuts down emissions controls during normal operation.
The lawsuits filed against Volkswagen, Porsche and Audi state that during normal operation, these vehicles emit nitrogen oxides (NOx) at up to 40 times the standard allowed under United States laws and regulations, but these lawsuits only sought to compensate current owners, not those who owned affected CleanDiesel cars for years, but sold them before news of the scandal emerged.
YOUR CONSUMER RIGHTS
Hagens Berman believes that all three consumer settlements achieved in the Dieselgate litigation have excluded tens of thousands of owners who rightfully deserve compensation for Volkswagen's deception. Vehicle owners who sold their cars before news of the scandal became public also suffered the same losses by being forced to drive highly polluting cars, and being deprived of the CleanDiesel car and performance that they paid for.
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