FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2016
For More Information, contact:
Mike Lewis (334) 353-2199
Alabama Attorney General
Joy Patterson (334) 242-7491
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AG LUTHER STRANGE ANNOUNCES COMPENSATION FOR
ALABAMA CONSUMERS UNDER SETTLEMENTS WITH
VOLKSWAGEN OVER EMISSIONS FRAUD
VW Required to Repurchase or Fix Falsely-Marketed Diesel Vehicles,
Provide Restitution and Address Environmental Harms
(MONTGOMERY)–Attorney General Luther Strange today announced
Alabama’s participation in an interrelated series of settlements with Volkswagen AG
and its Audi and Porsche affiliates arising from Volkswagen’s violations of state
consumer protection laws and emissions standards.
As part of the settlements, some of which are still subject to court approval,
Alabama owners of certain 2.0 liter, 4-cylinder engine VW and Audi diesel cars
purchased between 2009 and 2015 will be entitled to be paid full, pre-scandal fair
market value for their vehicle, in addition to a cash payment of at least $5,100. Under
the deal, affected car owners may also choose to keep their vehicle and wait to see if
VW and Audi develop acceptable emissions fixes. Car owners who exercise this option
will also receive a cash payment of at least $5,100.
The settlements also require Volkswagen to pay more than $570 million
nationwide for violating state laws prohibiting unfair or deceptive trade practices by
marketing, selling and leasing diesel vehicles equipped with illegal and undisclosed
defeat device software. These payments resolve consumer protection claims raised by a
coalition of 43 states and other jurisdictions against Volkswagen. Alabama served on
the executive committee of this coalition.
The state attorneys general’s investigation confirmed that Volkswagen equipped
more than one-half million diesel vehicles sold in the United States with “defeat device”
software intended to circumvent applicable emissions standards for certain air
pollutants and actively concealed the existence of the defeat device software from
regulators and the public. Volkswagen made false statements to consumers in their
marketing and advertising, misrepresenting the cars as environmentally friendly – or
“green” – when in fact, Volkswagen knew the vehicles emitted harmful oxides of
nitrogen (NO ) at rates many times higher than the law permitted.
501 Washington Avenue * Montgomery, AL 36104 * (334) 242-7300
www.ago.state.al.us Page 2 of 3
“Today’s settlement will compensate consumers and require Volkswagen to
make appropriate repairs to vehicles, as well as providing environmental restitution,”
said Attorney General Strange. “It also holds Volkswagen to account for its wrongdoing
and sends a strong warning to others that such deception will not be tolerated.”
The principal components of today’s sweeping settlements include:
- Volkswagen is required to repurchase or modify each of the 4,385 2.0 liter diesel
vehicles that Volkswagen and its affiliates falsely marketed and sold in Alabama.
As part of the settlement, a VW and Audi 2.0 liter engine diesel car owner can
sell the car back to VW at the pre-scandal fair market value, or wait to see if VW
and Audi develop acceptable emissions fixes; whether cars are sold back to
Volkswagen or fixed, the car owner will also receive a cash payment of at least
$5,100 over and above the market value of the car. Under this agreement, which
is subject to the approval of the federal court presiding over the class action
litigation and the FTC and EPA’s lawsuits, Volkswagen is to set aside up to $10
billion to address car owner claims. (Note: The current settlement does not
address the relief to be received by owners of the 6-cylinder, 3.0 liter engine
diesel SUVs and luxury sedans sold in the U.S. by VW, Audi and Porsche.)
- Volkswagen will pay $2.7 billion into an Environmental Mitigation Fund. This
Fund, which also is subject to court approval, is to be used by all States, the
District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to address the harm caused to the
environment by Volkswagen’s unlawful diesel vehicles.
- Volkswagen will invest $2 billion in the United States over the next 10 years for
the development of Zero Emission Vehicles and supporting infrastructure.
- Volkswagen will pay more than $570 million directly to the States for the
companies’ repeated violations of the states’ and other jurisdictions’ laws
prohibiting unfair and deceptive marketing and trade practices.
- Volkswagen also will pay $20 million to the states for their costs in investigating
this matter and to establish a fund that state attorneys general can draw from in
future consumer fraud investigations, including possible violations by
- The States maintain the right to seek penalties for Volkswagen’s violations of
state environmental laws, such as Alabama’s law against tampering with a
vehicle’s emissions system.
To determine if your Volkswagen or Audi vehicle is eligible for the settlement, please
visit www.VWCourtSettlement.com Page 3 of 3
and enter your VIN number. The same website will contain additional details on
today’s series of settlements.