The teacher from Ulm, the pensioner from Hamburg, and the social pedagogue from Berlin: you all might have ever thought about a lawsuit against Volkswagen. Because you bought years ago, a supposedly eco-friendly diesel vehicles of the car manufacturer, which is now affected by the exhaust gas scandal, because it contained the in the fall of 2015 … the blown gene manipulation software.

deter A lawsuit against a powerful car group to the customer or to the customer. Because often the effort is not a claim in relation to damage. The evidence for the Individual is difficult, the time and effort out of all proportion to the possible profit. It is for that reason, the Federal government has brought the Instrument to the pattern of declaratory relief on the way. This Thursday it entered into force – in time, so the VW Damaged may sue the group.

All questions Overview: What is a pattern for a declaratory judgment is? Who is entitled to claim?
What conditions must be met for a pattern for a declaratory judgment?
the pattern of action Is the same as a class-action lawsuit?
How is the lawsuit against Volkswagen? The Association governs all of this?
Who can join the lawsuit against VW, and what is the cost? What is the advantage over a private lawsuit was filed? There are also disadvantages?
What happens with the previous actions? What actions are still possible? View more What is a pattern for a declaratory judgment is?

In the context of a pattern for a declaratory judgment, occur consumers against a company, be represented by an Association. The first action of this Form is directed against Volkswagen AG. Representing tens of thousands of diesel drivers of the verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband (vzbv) is directly on 1. November against Volkswagen dragged before the court. The reason for the immediate Action: owners of diesel cars have only eight weeks time, in order to make claims for compensation. At the end of the year, this would be time-barred otherwise may.

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Who’s action is entitled to?

For a pattern for a declaratory judgment is an intermediate step through a consumer protection Association is necessary. The individual consumer has no right of action. In the case of VW, the vzbv, together with the ADAC a pattern for a declaratory judgment to clarify whether the Volkswagen group car has damage to buyer intent.

Between the Union and the SPD was long disputed who should receive such a right of action. For example, should be prevented that Pseudo consumer organizations reasons for such actions. Action associations that have at least 350 members or ten member associations are entitled in the future. Also, you need to be four years registered, may not sue in intention to make a profit and not more than five percent of their funds from the company.

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What are the conditions that must be met for a pattern for a declaratory judgment?

First of all, a critical number of plaintiffs, and plaintiffs must be achieved: the applicant Association must also work on the cases of ten people Affected in a first step, in detail and on this Basis, a complaint to formulate. It is important that the consumer be able to demonstrate credibly that they have suffered the same harm from the same author.

The lawsuit is then filed with the court and the defendant. At the same time is created at the Federal office for justice in a second step, a complaint register. Within two months, a total of 50 Affected – so again, 40 more need to sign up – this is the action tab. This hurdle is not reached, it is not a pattern for a declaratory judgment.

Have found enough to be Concerned, is stopped a potential limitation, as in the case of Volkswagen,. At the same time, then any further Association is possible, the same pattern of finding to submit a claim. Involved the consumer not be able to submit again now a private lawsuit.

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the pattern of action Is the same as a class-action lawsuit?

The Form of a class action in the United States, but not in Germany. There are large differences between the two processes: In the US, lawyers are not involved, apply for a collection and to be Concerned, claim to be, if you leave active. In the case of the German pattern for a declaratory judgment, you must register, however, active.

With the pattern for a declaratory judgment is done for the consumer, it is only a first step. The associations collect controversial issues, which are binding, formulated, and lead processes in which issues are generally resolved. The decisions of a court are later binding for follow-on processes.

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the lawsuit against Volkswagen?

The vzbv wants to let a court determine that the group has damaged, through the use of manipulation software for consumers “intentionally unethical and cheated”. The affected vehicles should not have been brought according to the plaintiff in the traffic. The group owe it to the buyers, therefore, in principle, damages, says the vzbv.

to be Clarified in the result, whether the purchase price upon return of the vehicle must be replaced in full, or whether a compensation is to be deducted, or whether the manufacturer damage has to pay. Responsible for the action, the higher regional court (OLG) of Braunschweig, Germany.

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the Association is in charge of everything?

no, the consumer is further required. In the case of a pattern for a declaratory judgment, it is not about individual performances, but their General requirements, therefore, determine (hence the Name), whether the company has acted unlawfully.

does not condemn the defendant company, in accordance with the pattern action, but the individual consumer to collect on individual action and personal damage claim. The competent court is bound by the judgment of the pattern for a declaratory judgment. The vzbv believes that an eggner could signal pattern suit convict company in respect of his public Reputation, the willingness to replace the damage without the second suit.

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Who can join the lawsuit against VW, and what is the cost?

all of you who have bought from November 2008, a diesel vehicle of the brands Volkswagen, Audi, Škoda and Seat with a Motor of the type EA189 (four-cylinder, with displacements of 1.2 or 1.6 or 2.0 liters), where an illegal defeat device. The latter must have been determined by a recall of a licensing authority in Europe. The entry in the suit register, so the participation in the pattern of declaratory relief, is free of charge. The vzbv before informed of, and during, the procedure free of charge. Also a membership Association – as in the current case, for instance, in the automobile club ADAC is not necessary. According to ADAC, you can cancel up to the day of the first hearing date.

such As the consumer protection Association (VSV) in Vienna told, the Austrians also have affected diesel vehicle of one of the four VW group brands, the German pattern declaratory connect. As a result, the limitation period for claims for damages against VW will be interrupted, informed the Association. “In Austria so far, around 20,000 Victims have filed a complaint against VW. 320.000 potential participants in this pattern for a declaratory judgment, stay,” said the VSV-Chairman Peter Kolba. The Association has set up a Website.

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What is the advantage over a private lawsuit was filed?

in Particular, the effect. It is a single pensioner or a single teacher, but a recognized Association is not complaining. Also, the process of risk lies in this Association. A further advantage is that the claims become time-barred. Affected can wait for the judgment and then decide how to proceed.

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there Are also disadvantages?

The ADAC pointed out that, as with all other actions here, too, the possibility that the patterns application is not decided the application. Also, such a judgment, binding those who took part in the action. Therefore, the court should find that VW does not owe any compensation, then all entered in the Register Concerned would be bound by the judgment. They could not do before any other court for the damages.

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What happens with the previous actions?

thousands of VW drivers have complained their own initiative. Volkswagen, according to some 23,800 process in the diesel scandal were in September pending. More than 6,000 judgments have given it. A case has been decided legally, can no longer connect to the customer the pattern of declaratory action. This applies usually in cases where consumers had already agreed to it in a comparison with VW, the ADAC.

For the pattern for a declaratory judgment, is the car group is confident: “the Instrument of the pattern for a declaratory judgment does not alter our Position: There is no legal basis for the customer’s actions in connection with the diesel topic in Germany,” says Volkswagen.

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What actions are possible?

Apart from lawsuits against auto manufacturers could, in future, be also submitted to pattern declaratory actions against a tour operator or insurance, against electricity and gas supplier or, for example, in the area of tenancy law.

diesel scandal – consumer advocates-rich class-action lawsuit against VW With the pattern for a declaratory judgment, allows owners of diesel vehicles are demanding compensation. Consumer protection associations hold more than two million complaints. © Photo: Julian Stratenschulte/dpa

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