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ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

Manchester, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 8
ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

The ECJ has today upheld its previous ruling granting compensation to passengers whose flights are delayed by 3 hours or more and the reasons for which are not due to "extraordinary circumstances".

No surprises really as this decision had long been predicted.

Will post link to judgment when it becomes available.

Edited: 4:12 am, October 23, 2012
Leicester, United...
posts: 1,275
reviews: 1
1. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

Yup, no surprises at all.

In a nutshell, what it means is that delays of longer than three hours are considered cancellations under the EU261/2004 regs, so that passengers affected become eligible for the compensation of up to €600 if a flight is delayed more than three hours and the airline cannot show that it was due to "extraordinary circumstances".

Fredericia, Denmark
Destination Expert
for Bentota, Beruwala, Sri Lanka
posts: 35,965
reviews: 7
2. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

That will only mean fare increases.

Manchester, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 8
3. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

"delays of longer than three hours are considered cancellations..."

Not quite, passengers who experience delays in excess of 3 hours are entitled to the same compensation as those whose flights are cancelled, but the distinction remains between delayed and cancelled flights as there are other entitlements in play under the Reg which are only appropriate dependent on whether it is a delay or cancellation.

"That will only mean fare increases".

I don't see why that should necessarily be the case, the Reg has now been in place for nearly 8 years and delay compensation was originally ruled applicable 3 years ago so there should not be an increase just because a previous ruling was upheld.

Full text of judgment can be found here: eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do…

Edited: 5:00 am, October 23, 2012
Liverpool, UK
posts: 9,776
reviews: 14
4. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

Good news for those affected by delays but I'm sure airlines will not readily admit liability and will be creative with the application of "extraordinary circumstances".

Manchester, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 8
5. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

Tom, I agree that airlines will continue to make it very difficult for potential claimants, and in most cases the only successful claims will be those who are determined to see it through to small claims court.

Edinburgh, United...
posts: 7,745
reviews: 15
6. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

"I don't see why that should necessarily be the case, the Reg has now been in place for nearly 8 years and delay compensation was originally ruled applicable 3 years ago so there should not be an increase just because a previous ruling was upheld."

But how many people have received compensation in that time? I doubt it's very many.

Manchester, United...
posts: 338
reviews: 8
7. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

Lex, totally agree and I don't foresee that number growing.

Edinburgh, United...
posts: 7,745
reviews: 15
8. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

No, probably not, though as you say, that will likely be because passengers will have to fight tooth and claw to get what they're legally entitled to, something most passengers just aren't prepared to do. I think that's a major problem with the regulations. I law that practically isn't enforced just isn't much use.

Fredericia, Denmark
Destination Expert
for Bentota, Beruwala, Sri Lanka
posts: 35,965
reviews: 7
9. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

I don't see why that should necessarily be the case, the Reg has now been in place for nearly 8 years and delay compensation was originally ruled applicable 3 years ago so there should not be an increase just because a previous ruling was upheld.

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If airlines have to pay more compensations they only have one place to turn to recover their expenses;-)

That's what happened when a case went against Ryanair.

Leicester, United...
posts: 1,275
reviews: 1
10. Re: ECJ upholds previous Sturgeon ruling on flight delay compens

"the distinction remains between delayed and cancelled flights as there are other entitlements in play under the Reg which are only appropriate dependent on whether it is a delay or cancellation."

That is true. I should have said they are considered cancellations for the purposes of compensation, but they are still delays for other purposes. For example, the delay has to be over 5 hours before the right to a refund kicks in, which is automatic with a cancellation.