EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

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Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Passenger »

Yuqu12 wrote: 12 Feb 2020, 15:48 Quite strange to read such a decision as this seems contrary to the ruling of the CJEU in the Krüsemann/TUIFly-case, where the CJEU stated:
"Article 5(3) of Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 (...) read in the light of recital 14 thereof, must be interpreted as meaning that the spontaneous absence of a significant part of the flight crew staff (‘wildcat strikes’), such as that at issue in the disputes in the main proceedings, which stems from the surprise announcement by an operating air carrier of a restructuring of the undertaking, following a call echoed not by the staff representatives of the company but spontaneously by the workers themselves who placed themselves on sick leave, is not covered by the concept of ‘extraordinary circumstances’ within the meaning of that provision."

If a spontaneous strike from the cabin crew is not an extraordinary circumstance according to the CJEU, I simply cannot see how a union-led strike would be an extraordinary circumstance. Certainly when such a union-led strike is announced. Then the airline can already take some measures before the strike itself in order to remedy it as much as possible.
Indeed. There is jurisprudence in Belgian travel legislation that touroperators are responsible in case of a strike that has been announced clearly and well in advance - and that touroperators are not responsible in case of a wildcat strike. Apparent reason: a wildcat strike happens when workers "are forced" to go on strike.

On 15/06/2016, the EU has published this document: "...Interpretative Guidelines on Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding and of cancellation or long delay of flights and on Council Regulation (EC) No 2027/97 on air carrier liability in the event of accidents as amended by Regulation (EC) No 889/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council (2016/C 214/04)..."
Link:
https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content ... 15%2801%29
Article 5 there handles "extraordinary circumstances". Unfortunately, there is no clarification about strikes. Maybe that's something that will be in the amendment to 261/2004, that's now being discussed at the EU.

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Yuqu12
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Yuqu12 »

I checked the amendment of 2013 concerning Reg. 261/2004. In the Annex to it, I found the following:
Annex: non-exhaustive list of circumstances considered as extraordinary
circumstances for the purposes of this Regulation
1. The following circumstances shall be considered as extraordinary:
...
vii. labour disputes at the operating air carrier or at essential service providers such
as airports and Air Navigation Service Providers


So in the future, this may become an extraordinary circumstance, which is a change compared to the ruling of the CJEU.

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

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EU Court of Justice 13/02/2020, published 20/02/2020: the last flight of a booking Hamburg-London (BA) - London-Madrid (IB) - Madrid-San Sebastian (IB) was cancelled. The court states that passengers then are allowed to sue Iberia at a German court, even without they had booked at/with Iberia.

EU Court: "...Two passengers booked a journey with connecting flights under a confirmed single booking. The journey was divided into three legs: the first leg of the journey, from Hamburg (Germany) to London (UK), was operated by the British airline British Airways; the other two legs of the journey, from London to Madrid (Spain) and from Madrid to San Sebastian (Spain), were operated by the Spanish airline Iberia. The third leg of the journey was cancelled without the passengers being informed in due time..."

"...Where journeys with a confirmed single booking comprise of several connecting flights operated by separate air carriers, compensation for the cancellation of the final leg of the journey may be sought before the courts of the place of departure of the first leg..."

"...In its order of 13 February 2020, delivered today, the Court holds that the Regulation on jurisdiction must be interpreted as meaning that, where journeys with a confirmed single booking comprise several connecting flights operated by two separate air carriers, the compensation claims for the cancellation of the final leg of the journey may be brought before the courts of the place of departure of the first leg of the journey even if they are brought against the air carrier in charge of the final leg..."

Press release:
https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/p1_2889703/nl/

Full verdict: select your language in the "Curia" list (next to "EUR-lex"):
http://curia.europa.eu/juris/documents.jsf?num=C-606/19

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Passenger »

Yesterday: DB Fernverkehr ICE Inter-City-Express from Frankfurt to Brussels. Expected schedule 12h43-15h35. At 14h45, when the train had just crossed the border: technical failure. Grounded in the middle of nowhere for four hours, then pulled by a locomotive to Liège Guillemins railway station, where they arrived at 21h. End of journey, no assistance: NMBS/SNCB said there were enough trains from Liège to Brussels.

Compensation? Refund? Free meals? Assistance? Nope. Not for railway passengers. Just free drinks.
https://www.hln.be/nieuws/binnenland/be ... ~af95a780/

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sn26567
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by sn26567 »

Passenger wrote: 29 Feb 2020, 10:02 Yesterday: DB Fernverkehr ICE Inter-City-Express from Frankfurt to Brussels. Expected schedule 12h43-15h35. At 14h45, when the train had just crossed the border: technical failure. Grounded in the middle of nowhere for four hours, then pulled by a locomotive to Liège Guillemins railway station, where they arrived at 21h. End of journey, no assistance: NMBS/SNCB said there were enough trains from Liège to Brussels.

Compensation? Refund? Free meals? Assistance? Nope. Not for railway passengers. Just free drinks.
https://www.hln.be/nieuws/binnenland/be ... ~af95a780/
Strange. I got compensation twice from SNCF in France when their TGV was delayed by more than one hour.
André
ex Sabena #26567

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Yuqu12
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Yuqu12 »

If I'm not mistaken, there is also a regulation or directive on passenger rights for passengers taking the train. Maybe it says something on the rights you have?

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Passenger »

Yuqu12 wrote: 09 Mar 2020, 16:48 If I'm not mistaken, there is also a regulation or directive on passenger rights for passengers taking the train. Maybe it says something on the rights you have?
Yes, there is a compulsary reduction of the ticket price, but it's limited to 50% of the ticket price for delays +120 minutes. For a similar delay, the rail compensation is far less then the 250-600 from the aviation Rule.

TLspotting
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by TLspotting »

Stupid question but do airlines have to give a compensation even if there are "exceptional circumstances" with Coronavirus ?
Hi. I'm Thibault Lapers. @ThibaultLapers & @TLspotting

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Yuqu12
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Yuqu12 »

What exactly do you mean with this question? Do you mean that coronavirus could be seen as extraordinary circumstance so that compensation does not have to be paid? Or do you mean that compensation does not have to be paid in extraordinary circumstances other than coronavirus? In my opinion, coronavirus itself isn't really an extraordinary circumstance, but the subsequent consequences like travel bans and closure of borders by national governments (leading to cancelled flights) are definitely extraordinary circumstances.

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

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On 18th March 2020, the European Commission pas published a document "...Interpretative Guidelines on EU passenger rights regulations in the context of the developing situation with Covid-19..."

See:
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=67995&p=393673#p393673

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

Post by Passenger »

EU Court of Justice, 11th June 2020: "...The unruly behaviour of an air passenger may constitute an ‘extraordinary circumstance’ capable of exempting the carrier from its obligation to pay compensation for the cancellation or long delay of the flight concerned or of a subsequent flight operated by that carrier using the same aircraft. Nevertheless, the air carrier must, in respect of the reasonable measures that it must adopt in order to release itself from its obligation to pay compensation, ensure the re-routing of passengers as soon as possible, by means of other direct or indirect flights which may be operated by other air carriers..."
Press release, with at the end a link to the full verdict:
EN:
https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/p1_3058090/nl/
NL:
https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/p1_3058097/nl/
FR:
https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/p1_3058089/nl/

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

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Not the final verdict yet, but the "Opinion of the Advocate General of the EU Court":
https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/p1_3348072/nl/
According to Advocate General Pikamäe, the mere diversion of a flight to an alternative airport which is near the airport for which the booking was made does not give rise to a right to lump-sum compensation. However, the airline is required to take the initiative and offer to bear the costs of transferring the passenger to the airport for which the booking was made or another close-by destination agreed with the passenger concerned.

An Austrian Airlines passenger is seeking lump-sum compensation from the airline of €250 because his flight from Vienna (Austria) to Berlin (Germany), having been delayed beyond the latest time permitted under the night flying restrictions in force at the airport of destination for which the booking was made (Berlin Tegel), was diverted to Berlin Schönefeld airport. Landing at Berlin Schönefeld was 58 minutes later than originally scheduled at Berlin Tegel. Moreover, Berlin Schönefeld is 24 km, i.e. 41 minutes, away from the passenger’s home, whereas the distance between Berlin Tegel and his home is 8 km, i.e. 15 minutes. Austrian Airlines did not offer the passenger alternative transport from Berin Schönefeld to Berlin Tegel.

Austrian Airlines refused to pay the compensation sought by the passenger, contending that the passenger had been delayed by only 58 minutes in reaching his final destination of Berlin and that he was able to return home without difficulty using another of transport from the alternative airport.

The Landesgericht Korneuburg (Regional Court, Korneubourg, Austria), hearing the case, referred a series of questions to the Court of Justice concerning the interpretation of the Regulation on Air Passenger Rights.

In today’s Opinion, which relates to some of those questions, Advocate General Priit Pikamäe suggest that the Court should find that where a flight lands at an airport which is not that for which the booking was made, but is in the same town, city or region, the passenger is not entitled to compensation on the basis that the flight has been cancelled. The EU legislature did not intend that scenario to constitute cancellation. A right to compensation would arise only if, as a result of the diversion, the passenger was delayed by three hours or more in reaching the airport for which the booking was made or the other close-by destination agreed with the air carrier.

In that context, the airline must take the initiative and offer the passenger to bear the costs of transferring the passenger to the airport for which the booking was made or another close-by destination agreed with the passenger. The regulation on Air Passenger Rights explicitly provides for that obligation to provide assistance and a passenger who finds himself or herself in an airport which is not that for which the booking was made is in a situation in which he or she requires assistance.

According to the Advocate General, a breach of that obligation to bear the costs of transferring passengers from the airport of arrival to that for which the booking was made (or a close-by destination agreed with the passenger) does not entitle the passenger to a lump-sum compensation, as in the event of cancellation or delay of flights of three hours or more. However, it does entitle the passenger to reimbursement of the amounts which, in the light of the specific circumstances of each case, prove necessary, appropriate and reasonable to make up for the breach by the airline.
- - -

Remark by the Court: The Advocate General’s Opinion is not binding on the Court of Justice. It is the role of the Advocates General to propose to the Court, in complete independence, a legal solution to the cases for which they are responsible. The Judges of the Court are now beginning their deliberations in this case. Judgment will be given at a later date. End of quote.

Passenger
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Re: EC Regulation 261/2004: news & court verdicts

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A Dutch Appeal Court ruled that Ryanair's general sales conditions, stating that passengers may not ask intervention from a claim firm, is illegal. The Court ruled that EU Rule 261/2004 forbits any attempt by an airline to limit or hamper the right to get reimbursement. It is the right for the passenger to address Ryanair direct or to ask a third party to do that on their behalf.

Press statement 12/01/2021 (official judicial website, thus Dutch only):
https://www.rechtspraak.nl/Organisatie- ... talen.aspx

Verdict 12/01/2021 (official judicial website, thus Dutch only):
http://deeplink.rechtspraak.nl/uitspraa ... HE:2021:30

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