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Mercedes-Benz "emissions scandal" heats up as law firm secures substantial litigation funding

Image credit: Ross Campbell

A globally renowned US class-action law firm has secured substantial litigation funding for the UK fight against German automobile giants Mercedes-Benz in relation to an emission-cheating scandal.

Hagens Berman UK, the London arm of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, announced the latest developments in its consumer group action litigation.

Hagens Berman UK successfully secured substantial litigation funding from Harbour as well as significant After-the-Event (ATE) Insurance to protect its claimant group. The firm has filed proceedings against Daimler AG, Mercedes Benz Cars UK Limited and Mercedes Benz Financial Services UK Limited, in order to press England and Wales Mercedes’ drivers claims arising from dirty diesel-related emissions.

Some 33,000 England and Wales based Mercedes drivers have already registered interest to have Hagens Berman represent them in the group litigation and can now formally opt in to join the group (according to GLO procedure). Other interested parties are also still eligible to join.

Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman, said: “British consumers have a similar right to compensation for unlawful, deceptive and defective emissions- cheating implemented by Mercedes.

“Following the $700 million US settlement against Mercedes, we spent the past year laying the foundation for equally successful litigation in the UK. We are now poised to hold Mercedes and other defendants to account.”

According to Hagens Berman UK, an estimated 1.2 million potential claimants in England and Wales owning, leasing or operating affected Mercedes vehicles – either currently or previously – have been affected, based on Mercedes selling more than 700,000 impacted vehicles there between 2008 and 2018.

This includes private owners and businesses, such as fleet operators and hire-car companies, as well as lessees of relevant vehicles.

Hagens Berman’s US litigation against Mercedes, led by Steve Berman, returned more than $700 million (£506m) to US owners of affected Mercedes dirty diesel BlueTEC vehicles2, and led to a $2.2 billion (£1.6m) settlement with the US Department of Justice, Environmental Protection Agency and others in 2020.

Michael Gallagher, Co-Managing Director and partner of Hagens Berman UK, said: “Harbour’s case-specific funding and the fact we have successfully secured ATE coverage for claimants from Top- Rated A+ insurers demonstrates a recognition of the merits of our case.

“ATE insurance is meaningful to our clients, and should be to every client claimant, as it provides an extra layer of value and security for them. We are especially proud to offer this to those who join our group litigation, in addition to a no-win, no fee arrangement.”

“As a firm, we have an impressive reputation for investigating, researching and litigating against global defendants and diesel emissions-cheating fraud. We will be leveraging that expertise and applying the same tenacity and attention to detail in pursuing our litigation in the UK.”

Current and former owners, lessees and fleet operators of affected Mercedes vehicles in England and Wales who are interested in finding out more about the Hagens Berman UK Group Litigation Order may visit This group action claim is being conducted on a no-win, no-fee basis, meaning that there will be no out-of-pocket cost to sign up or participate.

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