SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — In a case that has some similarities to the Volkswagen settlement, Judge Edward M. Chen of the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California on May 3, 2019, granted final approval of the $307.5 million Fiat Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep (FCA) “EcoDiesel” class action settlement. It will provide eligible owners and lessees with substantial cash payments and an extended warranty after a government-mandated emissions modification to affected vehicles is completed.
Under the agreement between consumers and FCA and Bosch, approximately 100,000 owners and lessees of Ram 1500 and Jeep Grand Cherokee 3.0-liter diesel vehicles from model years 2014 to 2016 are eligible to file claims and receive the settlement’s benefits. Most owners will receive $3,075 once the repair—a software reflash—is completed.
“We are pleased the Court has granted final approval of this settlement, which will allow consumers to finally receive the vehicle they were promised, plus cash compensation. This agreement accomplishes our goals of holding FCA and Bosch accountable for their diesel emissions cheating, and of compensating consumers while protecting our environment,” said Elizabeth Cabraser, Court-appointed Lead Counsel and chair of the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee, who negotiated the settlement on behalf of class members. “Now that the Court has granted final approval, eligible class members can begin the claims process. They should visit the settlement website for more information on their benefits and what they need to do to get them.”
Class members should sign up immediately at www.EcoDieselSettlement.com to receive detailed information about the claim submission period and process, the settlement’s benefits, and to be notified when the Approved Emissions Modification is available. Eligible owners and lessees will be able to obtain the repair at an FCA Authorized Dealer or, in certain areas, through a Fiat Chrysler employee and receive the associated cash benefit.
Current owners and lessees have 21 months from today (the “Effective Date”) to submit a claim, and two years from the Effective Date to complete the repair and receive compensation. Former owners and lessees will have 90 days from the Effective Date to submit a claim. FCA will pay eligible claims on a rolling basis as they are received and approved, and offers are accepted by Class Members.
For the cash payments, most owners will receive $3,075; former owners, lessees, and former lessees will receive $990. For example, an “Eligible Owner” who owned a subject vehicle on January 12, 2017 (Notice of Violation or NOV date) and completes the repair will receive $3,075. They will also receive an extended warranty that covers all parts and systems affected by the emissions modification.
Former owners and lessees who sold their vehicle after the NOV date can also file claims to receive a portion of the total cash compensation assigned to the vehicle if it receives the repair. Class members who sold their vehicle after January 10, 2019, will not be eligible for compensation.
The Extended Warranty term is the greater of (i) 10 years from the date of initial sale or 120,000 actual miles on the vehicle odometer, whichever comes first; and (ii) 4 years or 48,000 miles from the date and mileage of installing the Approved Emissions Modification on the vehicle, whichever comes first. The extended warranty will be provided free of charge and will be fully transferrable if owners or lessees sell their eligible vehicles in the future.
To receive the settlement’s benefits, class members will need to file a claim online or by mail. Print forms for mail submissions can be found on the Settlement’s website (www.EcoDieselSettlement.com) or can be requested by mail by calling 833-280-4748.
To start a claim online, class members will navigate to the Online Claims Portal, where they will be asked for their VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) and other information required to create a claim. They will be required to submit supporting documentation to complete the claim, which may include current vehicle registration, and a copy of their driver’s license or other government-issued photo identification.
In general, eligible owners and lessees should complete a claim before scheduling an appointment for an Approved Emissions Modification. However, if a class member receives an Approved Emissions Modification prior to submitting a claim, they will still be eligible for cash compensation if they submit a valid claim prior to the deadline. Payments will be processed once the Approved Emissions Modification is performed.
Class members will receive more information about the terms of the settlement via mail and email. The full details of the settlement are also available at the Settlement’s website. Additional information can also be found on the Court website: https://www.cand.uscourts.gov/emc/chryslermdl.