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Thousands of VW and Audi owners entitled to £8,500 compensation over emissions scandal

Birmingham Mail logo Birmingham Mail 01/08/2018 Tristan Cork

Thousands of VW and Audi owners are entitled to £8,500 compensation over the diesel emissions scandal, according to reports.

The revelations come as a result of a lawsuit that could cost the German automakers millions.

The court case relates to the 2015 VW emissions scandal.

The scandal saw the company confirm 11 million diesel vehicles, including 1.2 million in the UK – were fitted with software to cheat emissions tests.

This effectively meant customers were paying a fortune extra to run their vehicles.

This includes those driving a number of Audi, Skoda or Seat cars.

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A law firm is appealing to anyone who either owns or once owned a VW to join their fight to claim as much as £110 million in compensation from the emissions scandal, reports BristolLive .

The lawyers are mounting a class action against the German car manufacturers, hoping to score a similar court victory to one won in the USA against Volkswagen, which left the car maker agreeing to pay some €21.6bn in fines, compensation and related costs.

With the average claim of £8,500 per vehicle, the consumer rights law firm Your Lawyers estimate there could be £110 million due in compensation to local VW owners.

That is, of course, if the group action succeeds - and Your Lawyers are encouraging people to come forward and join the action.

“The ‘Dieselgate’ fraud was first revealed in September 2015 after Volkswagen was discovered to have installed illegal “defeat devices” in its EA189 diesel engines,” explained Aman Johal, from Your Lawyers.

“The devices were fitted by Volkswagen to cheat the European emissions testing regime. Volkswagen’s deceit led to over eight million vehicles being supplied to consumers across Europe which emitted Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) at levels up substantially higher than permitted by law,” he said.

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VW has not admitted wrongdoing or liability in the EU and continues to resist claims for compensation.

Instead it has offered a technical ‘fix’ for affected cars and, in some countries including the UK, it has offered enhanced trade-in terms and similar non-financial incentives on affected vehicles.

But Your Lawyers and a group of other law firms are taking VW to court in an attempt to win compensation.

“The Group Litigation Order against Volkswagen over Dieselgate is now live and drivers must seize the opportunity to sign up," said Mr Johal.

“Your Lawyers is proud to be on the Steering Committee and to lead the class action against the automotive giant.

“Owners of 1.2million vehicles in the UK can claim for the human, environmental and financial impact of Volkswagen’s installation of their illegal defeat devices," he added.

Were you affected by the Volkswagen emissions scandal? Find out if you could apply for compensation

"Volkswagen must be held to account for its reprehensible actions and the door is officially open for claimants.

“Sign-ups close on 26th October 2018, but Claimants will need to contact Your Lawyers before then so it is vital to act now and to ensure a scandal of this kind does not, and can not, happen again,” he added.

It’s not just VW cars that could be affected, but also Audis, Seats, Skodas that used the 1.2, 1.6 or 2.0 litre diesel engine made between 2009 and 2015.

One of those claimants already signed up is software engineer Haresh Kainth, from Bristol.

He bought an Audi A4 diesel car in 2014 but experienced problems with the car that climaxed in him discovering exhaust fumes gathered in the boot - he returned it after three years.

“I don’t blame the dealership I bought the vehicle from, or the Audi customer service team,” he said.

a close up of a car © Provided by Trinity Mirror Shared Services Limited

“I can’t believe that certain employees at Audi or the Volkswagen group had no idea what was going on and I feel sorry for anyone who was working for the company and had been implicated by this horrific scandal,” he added.

He now claims he still experiences headaches from the diesel exhaust exposure and is concerned about the long-term health and environmental impacts that have yet to be discovered.

VW has consistently denied liability, and said it would defend any legal claims made against it ‘robustly’.

“Our consistent position has been that the instigation of legal proceedings in England is premature for a number of reasons,” the firm said in a statement earlier this year.

“As we have said all along, we will defend these claims robustly, and we have made it clear to the claimant law firms that we do not anticipate that any of our UK customers will have suffered loss as a result of the NOx issue.

“We have implemented the technical measures in approximately 820,000 vehicles in the UK and in over 6m vehicles across Europe, with the overwhelming majority of customers in question fully satisfied. Given the English High Court proceedings have commenced, it would not be appropriate for us to comment any further at this time,” the statement added.

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