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A U.S. judge has approved a $14.7 billion settlement with Volkswagen AG over its diesel emissions cheating scandal. 

Last year, the company admitted that it had rigged its diesel vehicles with software to cheat emissions tests. The settlement offers remedies for about half a million drivers of affected 2-liter vehicles, which include several model years of the VW Beetle, Golf, Jetta, Passat and Audi A3.

Volkswagen will buy back eligible vehicles at the pre-scandal retail value, according to the Federal Trade Commission. Customers can also terminate their leases on eligible vehicles without penalty. 

Volkswagen says customers can also wait for an emissions modification, “if and when it becomes available.” There is no government-approved fix as of yet, though VW's working on it. 

Vehicle owners have until September 2018 to file a claim. Whatever option they choose, they also stand to get additional cash compensation of about $5,000 to $10,000.

VW says it will begin buybacks in mid-November and has hired 900 people to help handle the process, who will be deployed to dealerships.

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Follow Annie Baxter at @anniebaxter123