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This page summarizes court settlements of diesel emissions fraud complaints against Volkswagen Group of America (VW). It describes options for affected consumers and serves as the intake point for ideas on how Massachusetts should invest settlement funds.
Volkswagen Group of America (VW) admitted publicly in 2015 that it had secretly and deliberately installed software "defeat devices" designed to cheat state emissions tests. Nearly 590,000 model year 2009 to 2016 Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche vehicles with 2.0- and 3.0-liter diesel engines that the company sold or leased to American consumers were affected.
Residents of Massachusetts own or lease about 14,000 of the affected vehicles which, due to VW's actions, have emitted smog-causing oxides of nitrogen (NOx) at levels of up to 40 times higher than allowed.
In response to complaints filed by the U.S. Department of Justice and the attorneys general of several states, including Massachusetts, courts have approved a series of partial settlements resolving some aspects of the case. To date, these partial settlements require VW to:
Under terms of the court-approved partial settlements, Massachusetts is expected to receive more than $75 million to spend on environmental mitigation projects.
The Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) is inviting public input on how best to invest these funds in better air quality, cleaner transportation, and healthier communities.
If you purchased or leased an affected Volkswagen or Audi vehicle with a 2.0-liter diesel engine or Volkswagen, Audi or Porsche vehicle with a 3.0-liter diesel engine, the court-approved partial settlements give you the option of either:
Regardless of the option you select, you will also receive financial restitution from VW. The amount will depend on vehicle type and whether you own or lease. For additional information, visit: VWCourtSettlement.com
MassDEP is broadly interested in using VW Environmental Mitigation Trust funds to:
If you have suggestions on how Massachusetts should invest its VW funds, MassDEP would like to hear from you.
Please Complete Our Survey*
The following types of projects are eligible:
See the document in Additional Resources below or the VW settlement for more detailed information about eligible projects.
*Please note that all survey submissions are subject to the Massachusetts Public Records Law and are publicly available upon request pursuant to M.G.L. c. 66 §10.
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