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Best Practices for Filing EU 261 Claims Against United?

Best Practices for Filing EU 261 Claims Against United?

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Old Nov 11, 19, 4:14 am   -   Wikipost
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This information is created according to Regulation EC 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of the European Union.

Link to Regulation: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/resource.ht...C_1&format=PDF

It applies to flights departing from an airport in the EU (and Norway) and flights operated by an EU-based air carrier departing from an airport in a third country to an airport in the EU.

If you have booked several connecting flights as one single journey that means within the same booking the distance is from the start to the last destination indicated on your ticket where the delay or cancellation has time-related consequences for you. If you are travelling on several separate tickets, which have been booked individually, these rules apply only up until the final destination of each ticket.

All of the following conditions must apply to the situations referred to below:
  • <Airline> must be the operating carrier of the flight.
  • You must have a confirmed reservation on a flight we operate.
  • You must be fully checked-in at the time indicated or, if no time is indicated, not later than 45 minutes before the time of departure.
  • You must be travelling on a fare available directly or indirectly to the public, or on a ticket issued under a frequent flyer program.
1. In the event of a delay as listed below...
a) If the flight is delayed for two hours or more in the case or flights of 1,500 kilometers or less.

b) If the flight is delayed for three hours or more in the case of intra-EU flights of more than 1,500 kilometers.

c) If the flight is delayed for three hours or more in the case of other flights between 1,500 and 3,500 kilometers.

d) If the flight is delayed for four hours or more in the case of all flights not falling under a), b) and c).

...then operating carrier must provide the following assistance free of charge:

Meals and refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time

Two telephone calls or e-mails

Hotel accommodation and transport between the airport and place of accommodation (These are offered if you must wait at least one night after the scheduled time of departure and are subject to local availability.)

Reimbursement of tickets (If the delay is at least five hours and you decide not to travel, reimbursement within seven days of the cost of your ticket for the part or parts of the journey not made. One is also reimbursed for the part or parts of your journey already made that no longer serve any purpose in relation to your original travel plan. When relevant, the airline can also provide reimbursement for a return flight to the first point of departure at the earliest opportunity.)

Compensation in case of delays of 3 hours or more (see :-: section below)
2. In the event of a cancelled flight you can choose the following:
Canceling the journey and receiving reimbursement for tickets (The operating carrier must provide reimbursement within seven days of the full cost of the ticket for the part or parts of the journey not made. They must also reimburse you for the part or parts of your journey already made that no longer serve any purpose in relation to your original travel plan. When relevant, they can also provide reimbursement for a return flight to the first point of departure at the earliest opportunity.)

Re-routed, under comparable transport conditions, to your final destination (The operating carrier can offer to reroute to your final destination at the earliest opportunity or at a later date that suits you, depending on seat availability.)

Meals and refreshments in a reasonable relation to the waiting time

Two telephone calls or e-mails

Hotel accommodation and transport between the airport and place of accommodation (These are offered if you must wait at least one night after the scheduled time of departure and are subject to local availability.)

:-: Compensation in case of cancellations and delays of 3 hours or more:
  • 250* for all flights less than 1,500km
  • 400* for all intra-EU flights more than 1,500km
  • 400* for all other flights between 1,500 and 3,500km
  • 600* for all flights not falling under the conditions as listed above

:-: *The compensation described above is sometimes reduced by in court if the following conditions are met:
  • If you arrive within two (2) hours after your original arrival time for flights 1,500km or less then 125.is due
  • If you arrive within three (3) hours after your original arrival time for intra-EU flights greater than 1,500km then 200 is due.
  • If you arrive within three (3) hours after your original arrival time for all other flights between 1,500km - 3,500km then 200 is due.
  • If you arrive within four (4) hours after your original arrival time for all other flights not listed above then 300 is due.
3. You are not entitled to compensation in the following situations:
If the cancellation or delay of 3 hours or more is caused by extraordinary circumstances such as:
  • extraordinary meteorological conditions
  • security risks
  • strikes affecting operations
  • political instability
ONLY if the airline can prove in court that there was no way to prevent the delay - which is very hard to do for the airline.
Delays of the INCOMING aircraft for ANY reason NEVER qualify as an exemption for compensation as per EU court rulings.

If you are informed of the cancellation at least 14 days before the time of departure

If you are informed of the cancellation between 7 and 14 days before the scheduled time of departure and are offered re-routing to your final destination, allowing you to depart no more than two hours before the scheduled time of departure and to reach your final destination less than four hours after the scheduled time of arrival.

If you are informed of the cancellation less than seven days before the scheduled time of departure and are offered re-routing to your final destination, allowing you to depart no more than one hour before the scheduled time of departure and to reach your final destination less than two hours after the scheduled time of arrival.

Frequently Asked Questions
If I receive & take UA's "standard" delay compensation -- a choice of miles or ETC -- does this make me ineligible for EU261 compensation?

Generally no

Archive: Best Practices for Filing EU 261 Claims Against United? {Archive}
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Old Aug 7, 17, 7:07 pm
  #121  
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Originally Posted by notquiteaff View Post
I have filed two EC 261/2004 claims so far (LH and Condor), and both were paid without any issues.
LH's practice is to deny virtually all EU261 claims the first go-round.
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Old Aug 7, 17, 8:40 pm
  #122  
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Originally Posted by MrBizFlyer View Post
So my question is when does this rule apply if at all to United?
It is more like a legal question.

Reading EC261 literally, EC261 will not apply any U.S.>Europe flights. However, Canada views this differently and decided all passengers should be treated the same, and thus extend EC261 to all Canada>Europe flights as well.

While UA is apparently exempted, you may be able to argue that it is an unfair treatment. But again - is it really worth to push that far?
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Old Aug 8, 17, 1:42 am
  #123  
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
It is more like a legal question.

Reading EC261 literally, EC261 will not apply any U.S.>Europe flights. However, Canada views this differently and decided all passengers should be treated the same, and thus extend EC261 to all Canada>Europe flights as well.

While UA is apparently exempted, you may be able to argue that it is an unfair treatment. But again - is it really worth to push that far?
Since UA does not fly from Canada to the EU, I think you will have an uphill struggle making this argument.
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Old Aug 8, 17, 8:26 am
  #124  
 
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Originally Posted by Aussienarelle View Post
I understood from earlier in the thread that the customer appreciation "payment" is not relevant to the EU261 claim and is completely separate....
That's correct. United's offer of ETC or miles is to compensate you for the inconvenience, and it comes from the loyalty department. The EC261/2004 payment is a penalty to United, but paid to you, and it's meant to motivate carriers to do everything possible to avoid delays/cancellations. The EC261 payment comes from a different department.

You should apply for, and accept, both. I have done this in the past.

I agree about the shadiness of "hiding" travelers' rights -- I thought airlines are required to inform passengers about EC261, no?

Another thought -- if airlines were more forthcoming about EC261, and more travelers received payments, airlines would certainly simply pass the cost along to all travelers in the form of increased ticket prices. Interesting dilemma: if "those in the know" keep it a secret, do we all benefit?
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Old Aug 11, 17, 6:57 am
  #125  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
That nonsense was expressly rejected in Sturgeon v. Condor. I'd right back, citing Sturgeon, and politely demand they pony up.
Cited Sturgeon and got the following response

We have again reviewed your request for cash compensation and found that we complied with all the applicable regulations at the time of your flight.

I understand that the delay was, at best, very frustrating and truly regret you were disappointed. Please let me explain why cash compensation is not applicable under European Regulation EC261/2004. Because all routine preventative maintenance actions were performed on the aircraft as scheduled, and the extended delay due to environmental damage to an engine fan blade could not have been reasonably predicted or avoided, the event is considered force majeure and exclusionary to the mandatory compensation rules.

Please know that our legal department carefully reviews each of these matters with our system and technical operations groups to ensure we are in full compliance with the appropriate legal standards. Although the cause of the irregularity was extraordinary and unable to be avoided, we did what we could to minimize it, and have nothing further to advise at this point.

Although additional compensation is not forthcoming, we sincerely hope that you will choose to fly with us in the future.
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Old Aug 11, 17, 9:51 am
  #126  
 
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What is the average wait time for claims that are filed:

1. within a couple of days;
2. within eight months; and
3. within two years

Thanks
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Old Aug 11, 17, 10:50 am
  #127  
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Originally Posted by segiddins View Post
Cited Sturgeon and got the following response
I wonder if there is a claims agency that handles these in Italy? Because they are just flat thumbing their nose at the European cases interpreting the regulation.
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Old Aug 11, 17, 12:13 pm
  #128  
 
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Hi All,

I just read through this for the first time today, any advice would be appreciated. We had a UA flight in Jan. FRA-EWR-DTW, UA/UA Express metal the whole way, 1 PNR. the scheduled EWR-DTW was cancelled and we were placed onto a later flight. Our original arrival was 19:04 and the actual ended up being 22:56.

this was on 1/1/17, is it too late to apply for compensation? Does this even qualify (8min shy of 4hrs)?

thanks
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Old Aug 11, 17, 12:45 pm
  #129  
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Originally Posted by AceReport View Post
Does this even qualify (8min shy of 4hrs)?
No, not because of the time.

The segment involved did not qualify.
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Old Aug 11, 17, 4:32 pm
  #130  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
I wonder if there is a claims agency that handles these in Italy? Because they are just flat thumbing their nose at the European cases interpreting the regulation.
I hate to say it, but their strategy is working. I don't want to get myself so worked up over a bit of compensation, but it really stinks they're not following the law.
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Old Aug 14, 17, 4:43 am
  #131  
 
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Originally Posted by garykung View Post
No, not because of the time.

The segment involved did not qualify.
Why does the Segment not qualify? I thought that all flights departing out of the EU needed to get you to your final destination within the time limits established by EU261?


http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_CJE-13-18_en.htm
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Old Aug 14, 17, 5:51 am
  #132  
 
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Originally Posted by AceReport View Post
Why does the Segment not qualify? I thought that all flights departing out of the EU needed to get you to your final destination within the time limits established by EU261?


http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_CJE-13-18_en.htm
In the case referenced in the press-release, the "offending" flight was a flight departing from Europe, yet the departure delay of that flight was below the three hours threshold. However as a knock-on effect of this delay the connections were subsequently missed increasing the delay to 11 hours when finally arriving at their destination.

In the case here, the flight to EWR took off and landed as planned, so it was a fully US-domestic flight that caused the delay. While the wording of the judgement does not fully rule out that this would still be eligible for compensation in connection with a EU-departing flight on one ticket as a connection, a similar approach has been rejected by the court when trying to require non-EU airlines also to compensate passengers when departing for the EU. So my guess is that this delay indeed is not eligible for the compensation as per EC261/04.

Greetings - Dirk
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Old Aug 14, 17, 6:07 am
  #133  
 
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Originally Posted by djohannw View Post
In the case referenced in the press-release, the "offending" flight was a flight departing from Europe, yet the departure delay of that flight was below the three hours threshold. However as a knock-on effect of this delay the connections were subsequently missed increasing the delay to 11 hours when finally arriving at their destination.

In the case here, the flight to EWR took off and landed as planned, so it was a fully US-domestic flight that caused the delay. While the wording of the judgement does not fully rule out that this would still be eligible for compensation in connection with a EU-departing flight on one ticket as a connection, a similar approach has been rejected by the court when trying to require non-EU airlines also to compensate passengers when departing for the EU. So my guess is that this delay indeed is not eligible for the compensation as per EC261/04.

Greetings - Dirk
Thanks for the clarity.
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Old Aug 14, 17, 1:39 pm
  #134  
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Originally Posted by djohannw View Post
In the case here, the flight to EWR took off and landed as planned, so it was a fully US-domestic flight that caused the delay.
Also - while the Air France case has not made that clear, OP's case presented several embarrassing circumstances that the Air France ruling will not be able to apply:

1. The offending flight was not UA, but a UA Express flight, mostly ExpressJet. And whatever this regional partner was, this partner did not, does not, and will not operate a TATL flight.

2. It is unlikely that the Bundesgerichtshof and the ECJ can and will establish jurisdiction over a U.S. domestic flight, even the ticket was covered by the EC261.

Beside - the premise of the Air France ruling is to impose penalties over the responsible airlines which resulted the delay. So when UA did not cause the delay, it was unlikely that UA would be liable.
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Old Aug 14, 17, 3:41 pm
  #135  
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Originally Posted by segiddins View Post
I hate to say it, but their strategy is working. I don't want to get myself so worked up over a bit of compensation, but it really stinks they're not following the law.
Sadly, unless you start to pursue them, then they will not follow the law and they get away with it. There are plenty of EC agencies and I think their services fees are 25%, it might be worth having a Google and seeing what you come up with. Here is one: Airhelp I have no connection with them as my only EC261 claim was handled by me in the UK and was about as clearcut as you can get and they did not even try to wriggle out of it.
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