Although the U.K. Government claims to recognise that the Volkswagen Group is in the wrong over the ongoing Emission Scandal, their lack of action and assistance leads us to believe they're grossly overlooking the German manufacturer's immoral behaviour.
Despite the fact that the German automotive giants have openly accepted that they used software that altered the way millions of their vehicles (Volkswagen, Audi, SEAT, Skoda) emitted damaging and deadly Nitrous Oxide (NOx), the UK government has decided not to pursue them further.
For us, this is deeply disappointing - but for our clients, they don't need to worry, because we won't be backing down!
The UK Government's stance is a failure to look after UK citizens
It's already been estimated that people have potentially died as a direct result of the secretly inflated pollution caused by the vehicles over the six year period; and with only 1 in 10 vehicles having the recall done so far, they still might be!
When one of our legal team visited Brussels for a conference in September, an audience member reminded the panel - which included Imelda Labbé, Head of Volkswagen Group After Sales - that within just two hours of the conference being in session, 16 people had statistically died from Nitrous Oxide emissions.
That statistic alone shows just how important it is that the world makes a collective effort to reduce NOx emissions, which is the whole point of having the testing and restrictions in the first place. Yet despite the laws we have to protect people against its deadly effects, Volkswagen seemingly put profits over people when they took the drastic step to ensure their vehicles passed the testing but went on to pollute up to 40 times more NOx in real world driving conditions.
This effect that Nitrous Oxide has on the environment and on human health - and just how serious it is - makes it all the more disappointing that the UK Government has decided not to punish Volkswagen for what they've done; or at least assist us in making sure they're brought to justice.
Although the UK Government will continue to "monitor" Volkswagen's actions, the bottom line is that they will not be pursuing legal action. The reason for this is because they believe that the root of the misconduct does not lie in the UK and is simply subject to the rigorous investigation in Germany.
This simple 'monitoring' approach is a fairly easy backseat stance in our view.
This is a stark difference when compared to the U.S. where continual State and Federal pressure has led to settlement negotiations for vehicle owners. The State of California was amongst the first to sue them for millions of dollars for the harm they have caused to their people and the environment as well, and more States are set to follow.
EU Legislation actively puts a duty on Member States to ensure emissions standards are enforced, so there is plenty the UK Government could do if they wanted to. Whether the EU will step in and force Member States to act remains to be seen.
All in all, the UK Government's failure to take action is extremely disappointing. What kind of message does this send out?
We WILL keep fighting for justice!
We're confident that we'll be able to win our action in the High Court of Justice as we lead the fight for compensation for thousands upon thousands of victims here in the UK.
Although the UK Government may be backing down, we won't be!
At the end of the day, they have allegedly utilised so-called "defeat devices" to ensure their vehicles passed emission testing but go on to pollute up to 40 times more Nitrous Oxide in the real world.
In some ways, the UK Government's lack of action doesn't come as much of a surprise. Having represented thousands of people in previous Group Action cases, this is not the first time our lawyers have had to watch our government sit idly by and do nothing.
Thankfully, the law does allow victims to pursue a private legal case, and that's exactly what we're doing. You can join the thousands of people we're acting for now, and with Court-imposed cut off points for joining the action potentially looming very soon, our best advice to you is to make sure you act as soon as you possibly can to avoid missing out.
There is a lot to be said by strength in numbers - join the fight today!
We're happy to offer No Win, No Fee arrangements for victims eligible to join our action, so what is there to lose?
You can complete a registration form and we can contact you to discuss how to join the action, or you can call our team on 0800 634 75 75 today.