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VW scandal: Compensation after the statute of limitations is unlikely

Anyone who only sued VW in the diesel scandal in 2020 will most likely not receive any compensation. The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) wants to stay true to its line here and not make any exceptions, as became apparent in a hearing in Karlsruhe on Thursday. Because the plaintiff is dealing with a newly bought car, it is still not certain that she will get nothing. In your case, so-called residual damages could be considered. The judges still want to check this and announce their verdict on July 14th. (Az. VIIZR 422/21)

Claims for damages must be asserted within three years. The scandal broke in autumn 2015. According to the law, the period begins to run from the point at which “the creditor becomes aware of the circumstances giving rise to the claim and the person of the debtor or should have become aware thereof without gross negligence”.

Broad coverage

In its judgments of February 10, the Senate had already decided that it would assume gross negligence from the end of 2016. It follows that claims are time-barred at the end of 2019.

The presiding judge Rdiger Pamp referred again to the broad media coverage. VW itself sent messages and set up an Internet portal that customers could use to check whether their diesel was also equipped with the illegal exhaust gas technology. “You had to get going and take care of it,” said Pamp. You could have simply called or written to VW.

VW wrote to Holder

The plaintiff Sieglinde Seigfried sees it differently. “Where should I get the phone number from VW or Audi?” Said the 77-year-old after the hearing. Her deceased husband bought the car, she has no idea about it. You asked in the workshop. “But it was always said: wait until you get the answer.”

According to Volkswagen, “the individual owners of the vehicles were written to directly as soon as possible”. Seigfried states that he only received such a letter in early 2017. The Stuttgart Higher Regional Court had therefore awarded her damages.

Audi car, VW engine

In certain cases, residual damages may be considered after the statute of limitations. This is about an Audi, only the engine with the manipulation software was obtained from the parent company VW. There is still no highest court judgment on this constellation. (dpa/swi)

Also read:

Residual damages from new VW cars: Federal Court of Justice examines claims by diesel plaintiffs if they are time-barred

Even if the lawsuit is too late in the exhaust gas scandal: the Federal Court of Justice awards buyers residual damages

Federal Court of Justice on the emissions scandal at VW: Late plaintiffs receive no compensation for used cars

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I started to play with tech since middle school. Smart phones, laptops and gadgets are all about my life. Besides, I am also a big fan of Star War. May the force be with you!

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