As we all are now aware, the UK will be leaving the EU in March of this year.
In October of 2012 there was a huge shift for airline passengers when there was a change in the law, and travellers were now entitled to claim compensation for such things as long delays and flight cancellations.
For passengers flying short haul, there is a maximum claim entitlement of €250 if a flight arrives at its destination three hours after the scheduled time. If flying long haul and the flight is delayed for four hours or more on arrival at its destination, you could be entitled up to €600.
According to Brexit discussions, the government have said they are not intending on changing any compensation claim legislation for delayed flights, however, the EU could reduce the compensation payout limits. Brussels have discussed the reduction of clients compensation entitlements. This could potentially be; half of the monetary entitlement for delays between 3 and 5 hours from scheduled arrival time for short haul flights, and delays between 4 to 12 hours for their long haul flights.
Airlines may be forced to clarify the entitlements of their travellers, making them much clearer for passengers to understand. This could include airport tannoy announcements explaining the rights to make a claim to delayed passengers. The airlines could also be made to make automatic payments back to passengers who have booked directly with the airline, just as Virgin trains do with their delays.
With Brexit, there will be legal confusion when trying to claim against airlines. For example, a flight from London to Paris will be conflicted under the EU regulations, for departures and take off in Paris and the new UK version for any departures and take off in the UK. Lansdown Financial Ltd. will be able to help sort out any confusion regarding your compensation claim.
If you already have an active claim, either direct with the airline or with a claims company, you might want to contact them to check your position regarding Brexit. Up until the UK’s exit from the EU flight passengers are still covered by Regulation 261/2004.
There are almost 7,000 laws and regulations that the EU have, and of course the UK abide by. The UK government will now have to decide if they keep abiding by these rules, whether they adapt to suit them, or ignore completely. If the government decide to ignore the Regulation 261/2004 there could be future scenarios where UK passengers will not be entitled to the added extras, such as hotel overnight stays and food and drink tokens, whereas the rest of the EU will be entitled to them.
Lansdown Financial will be able to update you with more information on this when we know more.