It is now apparent that Volkswagen appears to have significant legal troubles. Internet and news reports indicate the state of New Jersey has sued Volkswagen for selling vehicles with the inappropriate engines. It appears the state of New Jersey has put a bid out the law firms to represent the state in pursuing Volkswagen to recoup various costs, presumably environmental costs. New Jersey is not the only state to have filed a lawsuit against Volkswagen as numerous other states have done the same thing. In addition, class actions have been filed against Volkswagen and have been designated multi district litigation or MDL. What this means is that all the Volkswagen lawsuits from around the country, each and every case, will be transferred, consolidated into this one federal court action which appears to be pending in California.
Volkswagen has admitted equipping cars with software that let them cheat on diesel emissions tests in the U.S. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is suing the company in federal court over what it says were 600,000 such vehicles.
So not only does Volkswagen have the various lawsuits from the very states but they have been subject to numerous class actions which have been consolidated. It appears as though the only question is going to be when Volkswagen can no longer stand the pressure. One must assume that the financial pressure on Volkswagen is significant in light of the investigation and the lawsuits from the states and the amount of money that they are potentially seeking in compensation for the alleged and admitted corporate fraud. Pursuant to the link attached hereto, Volkswagen has admitted the corporate fraud and is working with the very states including California to repair the vehicles or make sure that the vehicles comply with the various states law including California’s law on omissions.
Currently, it is difficult to tell the end result however it is going to get very expensive for Volkswagen very quickly. One might have to doubt the viability of the company or the need for Germany to come to the assistance of Volkswagen in light of the potential monetary sanctions, and compensatory damages being sought against the company. I am ‘assuming that the question everyone’s mind is how does such a large company engage in such wide scale inappropriate, system wide conduct. This is a very good question and I’m assuming that the lawsuits and the investigations from the various states will provide us with an answer. Usually it is not a very simple answer. Why have there been no whistle blowers with regard to this issue? Why has there been no previous news media coverage on these issues? These are all various, unknown questions.
Volkswagen says as many as 11 million cars worldwide have the software that enables them to cheat on tests. The company says it is working to fix the cars and to change its culture so that something similar does not happen again.
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