Bannister Law considering class action for people deceived in VW scandal

Media Release: 20th October

October 20, 2015

Australian legal firm Bannister Law is coordinating a potential class action against the Volkswagen Group after the car giant admitted to widespread use of ‘defeat devices’ in its diesel engines in VWs, Audis, Škoda and Seats manufactured from 2008 to 2014.

Charles Bannister, firm Founder and Principal who also owns an affected Volkswagen, said potential litigants, especially owners of impacted cars were struggling to come to terms with the magnitude of the alleged deceit and its implications.

According to Mr Bannister, if the allegations are true, those years of fraudulent actions by VW may have caused damage to:

  • People whose vehicles will diminish in value as a result of the deception
  • People who made ‘environmental’ purchases based on the false emissions data
  • Dealers who sell and resell the VW, Audi, Škoda and Seat diesel vehicles
  • Shareholders including institutional investors
  • Competitors who were competing with fraudulent marketing for six years
  • Individuals who may have been injured or killed by the illegal emissions from these vehicles
  • Governments and others who have made climate change forecasts based on false data

“At this stage we simply don’t know the extent of the damage, especially because the VW Group is not being forthcoming with information. So far the Head of the Volkswagen Group in the US has laid the blame on “a couple of software engineers”, but we expect a lot more people were either complicit or complacent, allowing this deception,” said Mr Bannister.

“It’s emerging that over seven years Volkswagen altered its illegal software several times, so we can expect many people up the management ladder to be involved.

“On some reports the car-maker is so far facing an estimated AUD$62.5bn in legal claims with class actions planned around the world, over 30 in the US alone.

“With over 90,000 vehicles fitted with the ‘defeat device’ in Australia it is inevitable that many people may be entitled to compensation,” said Mr Bannister.

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