Volkswagen faces “staggering” liability after U.S. appeals court ruling

Volkswagen created software to cheat emissions tests, so that they could sell cars that emitted more than 40 times the level of dangerous toxic gasses allowable by law. Most people have forgotten abut this by now, but Volkswagen is still dealing with the consequences. Rightfully so, I might add –– if the punishment for breaking these laws is smaller than the profits generated by doing so, more often that not corporations will choose to chase profits by bending the law to its breaking point.

Volkswagen has already faced many angry customers and $35 billion in fines and settlements, but that may be just the beginning. David Shepardson and Jonathan Stempel at Reuters have just reported the latest following a unanimous U.S. appeals court ruling:

A U.S. appeals court ruled on Monday that Volkswagen AG cannot escape potential financial penalties from two counties in Florida and Utah that may amount to a “staggering” additional liability arising from the German automaker’s diesel emissions scandal.


Hopefully they don’t mean staggering in comparison to the $35 billion Volkswagen has already paid –– I would think any new fines would look small in comparison.

Volkswagen settled U.S. criminal and civil actions prompted by the cheating scandal for more than $20 billion, but that did not shield it from liability from local and state governments, the 9th Circuit noted. 

The 9th Circuit found that nothing in the Clean Air Act “raises the inference that Congress intended to place manufacturers beyond the reach of state and local governments.”


Uh oh.

Read the full story at Reuters

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