EUclaim hails UK court triumph as an important victory for airline passengers

Thursday 17, February 2011


EUclaim hails UK court triumph as an important victory for airline passengers


EUclaim, the leader in the airline consumer rights movement, announced today that the British Courts have clarified that there is no general stay of claims against airlines for compensation in cases of delays more than three hours brought under EC Regulation 261/2004.


The court ruled that an application to stay in a particular case is not tantamount to a general suspension of the Regulation.


Airlines had been wrongly interpreting an order of the High Court in the judicial review case of TUI Travel PLC, British Airways PLC, easyjet Airline Company Limited and International Air Transport Association v The Civil Aviation Authority by stating that this case placed an automatic general stay on all delay cases. This is not correct; and in the case yesterday, Thomas Cook conceeded that this was the position.


The effect of yesterday’s ruling is that any passengers who may have a claim against airlines for compensation under the Regulation for a delay of more than three hours where ‘extraordinary circumstances’ do not exist, can proceed with their claim. 


“We are happy that the Courts in the United Kingdom have confirmed what we always knew- that delay claims against airlines have not been stayed generally,” said Mike Rattenbury, Solicitor and Director of EUclaim UK. “This means that the Civil Aviation Authority, and airlines themselves, must continue to interpret the Regulation as imposing an obligation on air carriers to pay compensation in the event of a long delay. If the airlines fail to comply, the CAA can invoke its powers of enforcement.”


“It is vitally important that passengers who may have such claims now pursue them and bring them to the attention of the airlines as soon as possible,” said Hendrik Noorderhaven CEO, EUclaim.  “Although EUclaim is disappointed that it has taken many months to clarify the position, it now trusts that airlines will proceed to process compensation claims.”



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