World Flight canceled by pilots' strike must be compensated, rules...

Flight canceled by pilots’ strike must be compensated, rules European justice

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Interior view of an airplane (illustration). – PIxabay / StockSnap

Airlines must compensate passengers whose flights have been canceled or delayed due to a strike by pilots to obtain increases in particular, according to a judgment rendered on Tuesday by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

Such a strike, even if it is organized “in accordance with the conditions laid down by national legislation”, does not “fall under the concept of” extraordinary circumstance “” allowing the company to avoid paying these indemnities.

Not an “extraordinary circumstance”

The referral by a Swedish court of this case to the CJEU follows the refusal of the Scandinavian airline SAS to compensate a passenger whose flight had been canceled in 2019, during a seven-day strike by pilots, who demanded a increase.

SAS considered this strike to be an “extraordinary circumstance”, “since it was not inherent in the normal exercise of its activity (…) and escaped its effective control”, according to the press release from the CJEU. It is up to the national court to resolve the case in accordance with the court’s decision, according to the same source.

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