EU 261 and British Airways

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Sep 8, 2015
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EU 261 and British Air.

I sent letters to British Air asking compensation for a cancelled flight from Heathrow to Philadelphia under EU261 and was denied because the flight was cancelled due to an "Industrial action". It seems some of the flight crew went on strike. British Air's take is this is an extraordinary circumstance and they are relieved from the EU261 obligations. My story was published on the Chis Elliott e-mail site on Oct. 24, 2017 under the title "Does a cabin crew strike relieve British Airways from it's EU261 obligation?"
I have files a request with Civil Aviation Authority of the United Kingdom.

Any additional ideas on how to proceed?
 
R

Realitoes

Guest
Until the ECJ directly rules that industrial action by airline staff is not covered under the "extraordinary circumstance", airlines are not going to pay the delay compensation. Unfortunately, there have been some indirect ruling that suggestion that the ECJ believes that these situations are covered by that exception - Finnair Oyj v Timy Lassooy

The best you can hope for from the CAA is a determination that they owe you compensation. They cannot however force the airline to pay the compensation. You can use the determination though in a court action against the airline.
 
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jsn55

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Dec 26, 2014
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What was the re
EU 261 and British Air.

I sent letters to British Air asking compensation for a cancelled flight from Heathrow to Philadelphia under EU261 and was denied because the flight was cancelled due to an "Industrial action". It seems some of the flight crew went on strike. British Air's take is this is an extraordinary circumstance and they are relieved from the EU261 obligations. My story was published on the Chis Elliott e-mail site on Oct. 24, 2017 under the title "Does a cabin crew strike relieve British Airways from it's EU261 obligation?"
I have files a request with Civil Aviation Authority of the United Kingdom.

Any additional ideas on how to proceed?
What was the result of your story appearing on Elliott's blog? Were the advocates/writers able to assist you? What was the outcome of your story?
 
Sep 8, 2015
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I filed with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and they referred me to file with the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR). I have not received any response from them (Filed on 11/09)
 

Neil Maley

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I filed with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and they referred me to file with the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR). I have not received any response from them (Filed on 11/09)
It's way too early to expect a response. They can take several months because they have to go to the airline and get their version.'

You'll just have to be patient and wait until the have had time to investigate.
 
Sep 8, 2015
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It's way too early to expect a response. They can take several months because they have to go to the airline and get their version.'

You'll just have to be patient and wait until the have had time to investigate.

Just received the following:

From: [email protected]
To:
Sent: 12/20/2017 5:52:45 AM Eastern Standard Time
Subject: Your CEDR Application No:###### - Case accepted by CEDR


John Munton - Director of Dispute Resolution Services
Dear Mr. ####,

We are contacting you regarding (case)

On 26-Nov-2017, CEDR received an application for adjudication with Lawrence Karp that has passed the initial case intake review. In accordance with the Rules, British Airways has 15 working days to:
  • Attempt to settle the dispute with the customer via this platform (Rule 4.2)
  • Object to adjudication on grounds of eligibility (Rule 4.3)
  • Submit your written Defence to the claim (Rule 4.4)
You can access your case by clicking on the above-mentioned link.

If you have any questions about this case please call the CEDR office on 0207 536 6099 or email us on [email protected].

Kind regards,

Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution
70 Fleet Street, London, EC4Y 1EU, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7536 6099
E: [email protected]

Registered in England as Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution Limited number 2422813 Registered Charity number 1060369
The information in this e-mail and any attachments is confidential and intended solely for the attention and use of the named addressee(s). This information may be subject to legal, professional or other privilege or may otherwise be protected. It must not be disclosed to any person without our authority. If you are not the intended recipient, or a person responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient, you are not authorised to, and must not, disclose, copy, distribute or retain this message or any part of it.
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johnbaker

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Oct 2, 2014
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@Sir Lawrence Sounds like you're moving forward. I'd double check the details of the case by following the link. I can't tell from the email if you got it because BA updated it or that's the email finally going to BA. Just keep an eye out so you don't miss any deadlines.
 
Sep 8, 2015
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@Sir Lawrence Sounds like you're moving forward. I'd double check the details of the case by following the link. I can't tell from the email if you got it because BA updated it or that's the email finally going to BA. Just keep an eye out so you don't miss any deadlines.

This was a response from the [email protected] tell us that BA had until 10 Jan 2018 to answer the inquiry. We will see.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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Glad it worked out. I don’t understand why the airlines try to pull this. They know you are entitled to compensation but decline it hoping you won’t pursue it. How many others don’t pursue it after receiving a no?
They pull it for the same reason that car rental companies come after you for payment of damages you didn't do - because it's easier to put no effort into fighting for your rights.

They're hoping you (us lazy people) will just go away.
 

John Galbraith

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Jan 22, 2017
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I'm not one to defend BA but I don't think the legal the position is clear hence why they say no initially to claims. Here is why (and sorry this is long - it's not straightforward);

As we all know the law says is that Airlines don't have to provide compensation under EU261 if there are extraordinary circumstances. However the airline has to show that those are circumstances "which could not have been avoided even if all reasonable measures had been taken, namely circumstances beyond the actual control of the air carrier."

With strike action the position is not clear. If the strikes are unrelated to the airline such as baggage handlers or air traffic control then the airline is likely to have a defence because the airline can't avoid a strike action by other companies employees.

If it is the Airlines own employees then the answer is, well it depends. The U.K Civil Aviation Authorities view (following the BA strike action) is "if airline staff strike, and due notice has been given enabling the airline to make alternative arrangements, it is unlikely this strike would constitute an extraordinary circumstance." If however it is short notice then it can't be avoided and the defence works.

Of course that is just the CAA's view and the case law has looked at strike action by airport staff not the airline staff. So it is still open to BA to argue that they have taken all reasonable measures but could not make enough alternative arrangements. Hence airlines might decide not to pay and see who claims....
 
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