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I have had an ongoing claim with Jet2 for compensation following a fight delay in Feb 2011. There are six family members in the group, my wife and I, and four children under 16. I am the lead passenger and paid for the flights and the booking was made using my Jet2 account.

 

It was a technical fault and they have been using the “unexpected circumstances” excuse since 2011, and most recently said they were waiting the outcome of their appeal to the Supreme Court which they said would affect the outcome of my claim. When the Supreme Court refused permission for them to appeal, I wrote again asking for the full amount plus interest.

 

They have now asked me to submit a separate claim for each individual or they won’t consider them. This is the first time since I first claimed in 2011 that they have made such a request. After my initial claim, they made a partial pay-out for our allocated seats booking-fee, all on the same claim.

 

So they have the all the passenger details and they have even partially paid out on the claim. I am inclined just to go straight to the County Court now because they are obviously just time-wasting.

In my most recent letter, I said that if they did not inform me within 14 days of how and when they are going to compensate me, I would pursue the matter in the court.

 

Am I now justified in taking them to court? Is it reasonable of me to expect a reply in two weeks after an almost four year on-going case ? Their normal reply time is six to eight weeks.

 

If I don’t submit the claims again individually, would they be able to use that as reason for not paying if I go to County Court?

 

Many Thanks

Edited by citizenB
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How much time and trouble is involved in making a separate claim for each member of your family?

 

I think that they are certainly mucking you around – and I don't really understand why you haven't taken action a lot earlier. However, if you had to take a court action I think that you would have to be fairly detailed about the basis of your compensation claim.

 

Unless it really requires some disproportionate effort, I would go along with it and make the separate claims but accompany the claims by a letter before action and say that if they're not settled within 14 days then you will issue the claim form.

 

Tell them that you won't give any further notice about this. You should also point out to them that you consider that they are treating you unfairly and that you may add a further claim under I COBS and that you will send a copy of the final judgement to the FCA and to the FOS


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Id agree with above, why hang around waiting for them. But at least you can claim 8% interest on any sum owing.

 

Yes Id say you are justified in going to court, to be honest, anyone can make any claim at any time, and IMO the courts dont expect that much to be done before hand, following the pre action protcols and attempting mediation etc is noce, but in my experience the court doesnt take into consideration.

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Thanks for the replies.

 

I haven't taken action earlier because some courts were letting Jet2 apply for a stay pending the Supreme Court decision and I didn't want to risk it.

 

I can submit separate claims fairly easily, but then it goes to another eight weeks for a reply on each one, and another fob off, then my reply... and so it goes on.

 

But they have already had the details of the claims (in a single letter) and paid out partially, so in essence they have accepted the claims and definitely have them on their system.

 

Also, in my last letter I said I would pursue the matter in the courts if I didn't get a response saying how and when they would compesate me within 14 days, is this not a "letter before action". Would I need to spell it out more precisely?

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Another thing, if they send an acknowledgement fairly quickly, saying they have received my letter and I am in the queue and they will give me full response in due course, if I then go to court, can they not say that I should have waited for the full response? Or does a letter before action override this?

Thanks

Edited by howticklediam

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Hang on..this was from 2011, you could claim youve waited long enough. Courts dont want people rushing into litigation, but it would appear that youve been more than patient, there are various CPR pre action protocols, dont know if any would specifical;ly apply to your situation or just the general ones.

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Yes. I have written again but set out the info as 6 separate claims and divided the cost by six. Mainly just to show them up in court (if it gets that far) as I have listed all the previous occasions they have been supplied with the same info.

And it gave me the chance to say, if you don't pay up within 14 days etc...

 

Thanks again to all for the advice.

 

Tickled

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Id agree with above, why hang around waiting for them. But at least you can claim 8% interest on any sum owing.

 

Yes Id say you are justified in going to court, to be honest, anyone can make any claim at any time, and IMO the courts dont expect that much to be done before hand, following the pre action protcols and attempting mediation etc is noce, but in my experience the court doesnt take into consideration.

 

I've submitted a county court claim against Thomas Cook for flight delay. Initially They admitted liability and sent me a voucher for £701 for the two of us. I replied and said a voucher wasn't suitable and wanted a cheque by return, no reply hence the court action. They have filed a defence to my court claim despite me having an email admitting liability. Watch this space......

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I have just filed my County Court claim against Jet2. After they insisted I submitted all claims again, I did what they asked, then they asked us to submit my wife's claim yet again in her maiden name (her name at the time of the incident). Why? I cannot understand, how can they deal with someone and potentially pay compensation in their maiden name. Time for court. I'm actually looking forward to it. Watch this space also.

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So I have their defence.

In their terms and conditions there is this clause:

 

"Time Limits to bring a Claim

Your right to make any claim against us shall be extinguished if you do not bring an action within two years from the date of arrival at the destination, or from the date on which the aircraft ought to have arrived, or from the date on which the carriage stopped."

 

I initially made a claim in a letter within one day of the delay, so I guess they are suggesting that because I didn't bring an action through a court within two years, my right to claim is extinguished. Does the phrase "...bring an action..." specifically mean start a claim in court, or does starting a claim in writing count as "bringing an action"?

 

Could I argue this point in court?

 

Thanks in advance.

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So I have their defence.

In their terms and conditions there is this clause:

 

"Time Limits to bring a Claim

Your right to make any claim against us shall be extinguished if you do not bring an action within two years from the date of arrival at the destination, or from the date on which the aircraft ought to have arrived, or from the date on which the carriage stopped."

 

I initially made a claim in a letter within one day of the delay, so I guess they are suggesting that because I didn't bring an action through a court within two years, my right to claim is extinguished. Does the phrase "...bring an action..." specifically mean start a claim in court, or does starting a claim in writing count as "bringing an action"?

 

Could I argue this point in court?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

I don't think they can override the current time limits contained with The Limitation Act 1980, they COULD say there is a limit on any compensation they offer that is above and beyond that obliged by statute.

 

But you cant offer a contract that is at odds with statute law whether civil or criminal, i.e a contract cant say, if x doesn't pay £z on time ill come and punch him.

 

Therefore I certainly don't think that 'make a claim' can mean a court claim, it can only mean a claim with the company which you already did a day after the event.

 

There must be case law about this.

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See here > http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/oct/31/airlines-liable-historial-delays-supreme-court-ruling

 

One guy claimed for 2011 delay, the other from 2006.

 

Also see > http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/jun/11/air-passengers-flight-delay-win

 

"Flight delay claims are subject to the UK's statute of limitations, which allows claims to date back six years. The law for flight delay compensation, clarified in October 2012, applies to any flight leaving an EU airport and any flight into Europe on an EU–based airline."

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Thanks for that. They are using a lot of other defences as well, but that is the one I was least sure of.

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What other defences are they using ?. It sounds that following the above Supreme court case, they have none..they also appear to be messing you about.

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What other defences are they using ?. It sounds that following the above Supreme court case, they have none..they also appear to be messing you about.

 

The Supreme Court endorsed the idea (in the Dawson case) that the period for making a retrospective claim under Reg 261/04 was the national statute of limitation, rather than the Montreal Convention (which was two years).

 

The potential difficulty for the claimant is that - as I understand it - the period of limitation under UK law in these circumstances is six years or whatever period may be agreed between the parties. The airline's argument is that you agreed this period would be two years. Your challenge to this would be two-fold, I suggest: first, that this is an unfair contractual clause as it unreasonably restrictive; second, that the airline is put to strict proof that you agreed these T&Cs (it's not clear to me when they were amended to include 261/04 compensation - they originally referred to "damages", which is not the same thing as statutory compensation.

 

I have not read of these arguments tested in a court yet though.

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Thanks.

This point.... "The airline's argument is that you agreed this period would be two years. Your challenge to this would be two-fold, I suggest: first, that this is an unfair contractual clause as it unreasonably restrictive; second, that the airline is put to strict proof that you agreed these T&Cs (it's not clear to me when they were amended to include 261/04 compensation - they originally referred to "damages", which is not the same thing as statutory compensation.".... is getting too technical for me for to argue in court. But if statutory rights override T&Cs, then I'll have to try. I have checked an archive of Jet2's web site and they were the T&Cs when I booked the flight. But I made a claim in writing within 24 hours, and they acknowledged and refunded my seat booking fee, so I would argue that the time bar is irrelevant in any case as the claim was ongoing and accepted at that point. All I am trying to do now is get the rest of the money I claimed for.

 

The other defences they are using are:

 

1 - that I can't prove that I checked in on time - Yes I can because we had to retrieve our bags to be put onto a different flight. If I hadn't checked in on time, my bags would not have been air-side.

 

2- that I waived my rights to compensation by assigning them to a claims recovery firm in 2012 - I did, but the firm did next to nothing and the contract elapsed naturally in 2013 and I also cancelled it in writing in 2013, for which I have the letter.

 

3 - asking for stay on proceeding pending the C. van der Lans v. KLM case in Holland which is testing some aspects of defining extraordinary circumstances and technical fault in normal operation of an airline - I can argue "delayed justice is denied justice" and that this is unfair as it could take years and they have already delayed my payout for four years citing Sturgeon and the Huzaar case.

 

4 - that a transponder failure is an extraordinary circumstance- they got technical on this one. - I can argue the technical case, but my main point is that the transponder failure was actually on the incoming previous flight (outward bound from the UK) which was then diverted. The transponder was then checked, reset, and declared fit. So we were bused to the other airport and suffered a delay. So there was actually no fault on our flight as it had been rectified by that time, it is just that they have no spare capacity in the network so they couldn't provide us with a flight at our airport. The fault actually occurred on a previous flight, earlier that day. This also means that point 3 above should be set aside as it's irrelevant as there is no technical case to answer as there was no fault on our flight.

 

5 - hidden manufacturing defect - there was, about that time, a maintenance bulletin issued for the transponder of the type fitted on our plane. They are have provided no evidence that it was the same fault as affected our plane, in fact it can't have been as the transponder was reset and declared fit at the diverted airport. The bulletin also says, "within the next two years, refit these parts", so nor was it a matter of flight safety, it was a low-level maintenance bulletin.

 

Sorry, bit of a long message, but all together it sounds like they are a bit desperate and trying to intimidate me. The trouble is I don't have the resources or time to research and argue the finer points of case law.

 

If I can say I made a claim within two years, which I did, all be it not through a court. And that the technical problem occurred on the incoming flight, which it did, then it simply comes down to whether or not they should have the spare capacity to carry passengers stuck at an airport without an available plane. If not, then they should expect to compensate us for our disadvantage as those are the regulations in which they operate a budget airline, designed so that passengers don't suffer because of their lack of spare capacity.

Edited by howticklediam

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I appreciate the 2 year point can get quite technical - and I'm not a lawyer, so I can't pretend to speak with authority on it. But my point was merely to stress that I don't think it is a baseless argument on their part, and it is necessarily inconsistent with the Limitations Act. The fact that you complained to the airline within 24 hours is immaterial - the matter relates solely to the period for which you may initiate legal action, and the clock doesn't stop ticking until you serve court papers.

 

As for the rest of their arguments, I agree with you that they are bunkum. The check in point is just silly - for the reasons you state. As is the claims recovery company point.

 

The van der Lans case is being used by a number of airlines to persuade the courts to agree further stays. This is nonsense too. As you say, the VDL case refers to whether technical problems can be considered extraordinary. This was dealt with by the European Court in 2008 (in the Wallentin judgement). In the UK, as you say, the Huzar v Jet2 case went as high as the Supreme Court, who endorsed the Court of Appeals' view that technical problems are generally not to be regarded as extraordinary circumstances. Interesting, it was a low-level Dutch court that referred the VDL to the European Court but the Dutch courts do not anticipate a different result to Wallentin and are continuing to apply that law - and not staying flight delay cases.

 

Points four and five are all covered by Huzar/Wallentin. They are rehashing arguments already dismissed by the highest Court in England and Wales.

 

I agree with you that all these extra points are relatively easy to deal with. The only thing I remain uncertain about is the two year limitation by dint of contractual agreement. But - as you say - that becomes quite legal and technical. I still think your best argument is that the Dawson case confirmed six years applies as a general rule, and it is unfair for passengers to extinguish this right in exchange for a ticket.

 

The MSE Flight Delay forum is a good place to go for support and advice. There is a Jet.com thread here: http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=4384707

 

I've also pulled together a guide on how to claim flight delay compensation, based on my own experience with Monarch Airlines. You can get that from here: http://db.orangedox.com/GdfSa4xUZdZI5GJadr/Vauban's%20Guide%20to%20Claiming%20Flight%20Delay%20Compensation.pdf

 

Good luck with your case!

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I didn't think that terms of a contract could effectively override current statute law, but Ill look into this.

 

I deal here wostly with leasehold issues and for example many leases have clauses that say "ground rent is payable without demand", however Statute Law says S166 Commonhold & Leasehold Reform Act 2002 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2002/15/section/166) says that a demand must be sent, the lease (the contract) says you must pay rent every year whether the landlord asks for it or not BUT the law says you only have to pay if the landlord asks for it and sends demand, the provisions of statute law win and override any contractual provisions.

 

Plus surely this same argument (2 year) was presumably used in the other cases and failed ?, Ill have a look later to see if Bailli transcripts are available.

 

I wouldn't wory too much about technical engineering details, a Judge wont know about these either, just keep it simple and point to the Supreme Court and say it applies to any delay caused by a manufacturing/engineering/repair issue.

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Many thanks for looking into this.

 

I would also claim that it is an unfair clause because it doesn't explicitly say "serve legal papers" within two years, but that it says "bring an action". Which as far as I'm concerned is what I did in writing my complaint. If "bring an action" has some specific meaning in lawyer-speak that only lawyers understand, then it is insufficiently clear for a T&C on a consumer website. And my interpretation in general terms of "start a complaint against the airline" is a reasonable assumption.

 

Re the technical fault argument, as the technical fault was on the preceding flight I don't think their arguments apply anyway, as there was actually no fault on my flight. They simply did not have a plane available because of a diversion and delay on the network earlier that day, so it's a knock-on effect and cannot be argued as Extraordinary Circumstances.

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Case transcripts linked to on here > https://www.supremecourt.uk/news/jet2-v-huzar.html

 

The Dawson one discusses limitation.

 

Also see > http://www.caa.co.uk/application.aspx?appid=7&mode=detail&nid=2370

 

"• The judgement does not affect the limitation period affecting any claim; claims can be taken to court relating to cancellation/delay events up to six years ago. "

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I've just been pointed to this by a poster on moneysavingexpert.com:

 

261 - Article 15

Exclusion of waiver

1. Obligations vis-à-vis passengers pursuant to this Regulation may not be limited or waived, notably by a derogation or restrictive clause in the contract of carriage.

 

...so I guess that's their defence scuppered.

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I've just been pointed to this by a poster on moneysavingexpert.com:

 

261 - Article 15

Exclusion of waiver

1. Obligations vis-à-vis passengers pursuant to this Regulation may not be limited or waived, notably by a derogation or restrictive clause in the contract of carriage.

 

...so I guess that's their defence scuppered.

 

 

In the Watson case, the Judge refers to the Montreal Convention which has a 2 year limit v Limitation Act which has 6 years, but the rest of it is getting beyond me now. But in neither case do they go into technical plane details, there was a fault and that's that (although the Watson case was about lack of staff/sickness).

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I've just been pointed to this by a poster on moneysavingexpert.com:

 

261 - Article 15

Exclusion of waiver

1. Obligations vis-à-vis passengers pursuant to this Regulation may not be limited or waived, notably by a derogation or restrictive clause in the contract of carriage.

 

...so I guess that's their defence scuppered.

 

I hope you're right, but I fear you're not.

 

 

What obligation in the regulation is being limited or waived? None that I can see.

 

 

There's no mention of limitation periods in the original Regulation, but was subsequently clarified in the "More" case.

 

 

The ECJ confirmed that it was national limitation periods that applied.

 

 

So the point is whether it's legitimate under the Statute of Limitation to agree a shorter period.

 

 

My understanding is that it can be.

 

 

But I obviously hope I'm not right!

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The obligation to observe the Statute of Limitation?

 

What a mine field, why can't lawyers just use words and form sentences that people can understand?

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This question relates to a flight booking but is mainly a question of general consumer law.

 

I booked a flight and need to make a claim for delay.

 

 

The airline is saying that the T&Cs have a restrictive clause that limits my time to "bring an action" to two years,

and that I agreed the T&Cs when I made the booking.

 

Normal Statutory Rights have a six year limitation.

 

However, the only copy of the T&Cs they can produce which have the limiting clause are from a web archive from two months before I made the booking.

 

The T&Cs that I received via email with the booking confirmation do not include that specific clause but they do say refer to the T&Cs on the website.

 

According to my research of The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations 2000 which were current at the time of booking,

the T&Cs must be delivered on a durable medium, e.g. email or letter that can be stored unaltered for future reference.

It also states that T&Cs behind a link on a website that are subject to change (and they have been updated many times) are not a durable medium.

 

So the question is,

do I have a case for declaring invalid the T&Cs produced by the company as they are not on a durable medium,

and because they are subject to change,

and because I have no way of referring back to the precise T&Cs at the time of booking as they are updated regularly?

 

Can I force a court to only consider the T&Cs that were emailed to me with the booking confirmation,

as this is my only (and it would seem the only) permanent record.

 

Many thanks in advance to any consumer law experts out there.

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