A picture of Representative Janice D. Schakowsky
Janice S.
Democrat IL 9

About Rep. Janice
  • Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act

    by Representative Janice D. Schakowsky

    Posted on 2016-01-08

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    SCHAKOWSKY asked and was given permission to address the House for 1 minute.) Ms. SCHAKOWSKY. Mr. Speaker, last year, Volkswagen was caught defrauding its customers selling vehicles that emitted 40 times more pollution than is allowed by law in its so-called clean diesel models.

    VW customers paid extra for vehicles they believed were both cleaner and better performing than other cars on the market, but that is not what they got. They have a right to join class action lawsuits to recoup their losses and hold VW accountable.

    But the Fairness in Class Action Litigation Act, which we will consider [[Page H180]] today, would weaken the ability of those customers to pursue class action claims. In the case of VW, the bill would limit classes to people with the same vehicle model, the same emissions-cheating device, and the same emissions system, even though all clean diesel customers were defrauded in the same way. It would shrink the class sizes and make it easier for VW to defeat or settle claims.

    Why would we make it easier for VW to avoid responsibility by making it harder for Americans to pursue justice? It is shameful that congressional Republicans are trying to do Volkswagen's bidding by weakening the rights their constituents currently have.

    I urge my colleagues to join me in opposing this bill.


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