Landmark ruling could see thousands get compensation from airlines

A judge at Liverpool County Court today ruled in passengers’ favour in the test flight compensation case of Allen V Jet2.com, in a decision that could benefit tens of thousands of consumers. 

The case is likely to set a precedent.
The case is likely to set a precedent.

The Judge said Allen V Jet2.com cannot be put on hold pending the outcome of Dutch case van der Lans V KLM, as had been requested by Jet2.  In his judgment he said “…a line should now been drawn.  Justice delayed is justice denied”.

Five airlines (Jet2, Thomas Cook, Ryanair, FlyBe, WizzAir) had made similar applications to put their passengers’ flight delay compensation claims on hold.  As a test case, it is likely that all other flight compensation claims in England and Wales across all airlines will now follow the decision made in Allen V Jet2.com.

Kim Allen is claiming €400 in flight compensation after a delay flying from Manchester to Malaga on 26th March 2012.  Her Jet2 flight LS809 was delayed by just under seven hours due to a technical problem, a Flap Slat fault, which occurred just prior to take off, meaning she missed her daughter’s performance with the band Bobby & Jemima.

Kim Allen, 54 from Lancashire, said: “When I first heard about flight compensation I thought it would be easy to claim and that I’d just need to send the airline a letter.  I’d done my research online and understood that, by law, I was entitled to €400 so I just presumed they would pay out without any problems.

“I’m delighted with today’s victory.  As far as I know, the Huzar case had already answered any questions about technical problems being classed as extraordinary circumstances.  For the airline to try to put cases on hold yet again over the same issue just seemed wrong.

“I know that today isn’t just important for me but for thousands of other people who are in the same position as me.  We’ve all been kept waiting for so long but I’m really happy with today’s decision.  Hopefully now it’s time for the airlines to pay us what the law says they should.”

EU261 entitles passengers to claim flight compensation of up to €600 per person if they reach their final destination three hours or more after the scheduled arrival time.  The flight in question must be leaving an EU country or landing in an EU country on an EU airline.  Consumers have up to six years from the date of the flight to make a claim.

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