U.S. judge plans to involve Kenneth Feinberg in Fiat Chrysler diesel settlement

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A U.S. judge managing lawsuits against Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) regarding its alleged excess diesel emissions stated he is planning to name well-known compensation specialist Kenneth Feinberg to attempt to reach a settlement.

Feinberg has managed compensation funds for the September 11, 2001 attacks, General Motors ignition switch victims and the fallout from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion. He likewise worked as a consultant to Volkswagen on a compensation program coming from its enormous diesel emissions cheating scandal.

Federal judge Edward Chen in San Francisco stated in an order released recently that there is a need to figure out if all or a few of the pending matters can be solved by the parties faster instead of later.

He gave all sides until Wednesday to submit objections to naming Feinberg as settlement master.

Feinberg refused to comment Monday.

In May, the United States Justice Department took legal action against Fiat Chrysler, alleging it of unlawfully utilizing software that resulted in excess emissions in almost 104,000 diesel automobiles sold since 2014.

A lawyer for FCA, Robert Giuffra, stated last month the automaker is positive that regulators will authorize a proposed software upgrade as part of certifying 2017 diesel models to permit them to go on sale. The same upgraded software would then be used to address any excess diesel emission concerns in vehicles from the 2014-2016 model years currently on the road.

The U.S. EPA and California Air Resources Board alleged Fiat Chrysler in January of using undisclosed software to permit excess diesel emissions, which the government identified a “defeat device.” They are both still examining the proposed repair.

Last month, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne stated he was “confident of the fact that there was no intention on our part to set up a defeat device that was even remotely similar to what (Volkswagen) had in their vehicles”.

The Justice Department likewise has a separate criminal investigation into the matter.

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