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Emissions scandal: VW hires star US lawyer to handle cases

2015-12-18 11:29

SCANDAL CONTINUES Compensation expert Kenneth Feinberg will take on Volkswagen's emission-scandal cases. Image: AP / Lauren Victoria Burke

New York - Volkswagen, the target of US lawsuits over its pollution-cheating devices on diesel engines, said on Thursday (December 17 2015), it has hired lawyer Kenneth Feinberg to handle the complaints.

Feinberg, known for handling large consumer compensation cases such as the deadly ignition switches used in some General Motors cars, was hired to design and administer an independent claims resolution program to address claims related to the diesel-engine vehicles equipped with emissions standards-spoofing software.

'Go-to lawyer'

Volkswagen has admitted using the cheating devices in at least 11 million vehicles worldwide. The scandal first emerged in the United States in September 2015, where a number of class-action suits against VW have been filed.

Michael Horn, president and chief executive of Volkswagen Group of America, in the statement, said: "We are pleased to announce the retention of Kenneth Feinberg. His extensive experience in handling such complex matters will help to guide us as we move forward to make things right with our customers."

Read: Emissions scandal: Chinese NGO sues Volkswagen

Feinberg said in the statement he would begin work "immediately" designing an independent claims process.

Feinberg is renowned as the go-to lawyer for high-profile legal cases. He managed the compensation claims fund for GM, which is nearing completion of its work. The fund said last week that 124 deaths related to the faulty ignition switches had been deemed eligible for compensation.

Feinberg also managed similar funds for the victims of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks and the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.


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