About 11,000 owners of Volkswagen vehicles have joined proceedings initiated by Test-Achats consumer association against the carmakers for equipping its cars with systems enabling them to beat anti-pollution tests. Hearings to determine whether the proceedings can be admitted should be held in late October.
While US consumers can receive up to 10,000 dollars in compensation, nothing of the sort has been granted to European consumers. Finding this unacceptable, Test-Achats launched a class action suit on 15 June 2016 against Volkswagen and D’Ieteren, which imports vehicles from the German carmarker into Belgium.
“Those proceedings apply only to vehicles bought from 1 September 2014 onward. As the organization’s intention is to defend all persons duped by Volkswagen, including those with vehicles bought before that date, it decided to defend them individually in court,” Test-Achats explained.
One-third of the 11,000 persons who have heeded Test-Achat ‘s call have joined the class-action suit, while the consumer association is filing individual suits for the others.
Test-Achats said the cases had been delayed. Normally, a court session to determine whether the lawsuits can be accepted should have been held on 31 January, but the date has now been set for 30 and 31 October 2017.
“The individual suits against the VW group were also submitted in October 2016. The date of the submissions was only set on the 3rd of June. The legal process is long, but the objective – compensation for all consumers duped by the Volkswagen Group’s practices – is worth the wait,” said the consumer rights association. Christopher Vincent The Brussels Times