Advertisement

The Enforcement of Air Passenger Rights: An Analysis and Comparison of Claims Management Companies and Recently Established Conciliation Bodies

  • Claudia HippEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Eurasian Studies in Business and Economics book series (EBES, volume 10/1)

Abstract

Based on a regulation the European Union issues common rules on compensation and assistance to air passengers in the event of denied boarding and of cancellation or long delay of flights. Nevertheless, since the regulation came into force in February 2005, one could observe that the legal framework itself has suffered from many undefined terms and loopholes, so that it had to be supplemented by an increasing body of case law. Several reasons like the unclear legal situation, high transaction costs for a lawsuit in relation to a relatively low amount of compensation and the strategical behavior of the airlines not to handle passengers’ complaints in a correct manner, led to the situation that affected air passengers were deterred from enforcing their rights. The objective of the paper is to analyze, how new business models in form of claims management companies (e.g. Flightright, EUclaim, FairPlane, … etc.) have successfully established themselves on the market. In comparison, as another effective tool for the enforcement of air passenger rights, recently founded conciliation bodies are taken into consideration; whereby the Conciliation Body for Public Transport in Germany serves as an exemplary model.

Keywords

Enforcement of air passenger rights Consumer protection EU Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 Conciliation body for public transport Claims management companies Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) 

References

  1. Augenhofer, S. (2012). Some questions on enforcement and individual redress – The example of Regulation (EC) No 261/2004. In R. Greimer, R. Schütze, & T. Garber (Eds.), Europäische und internationale Dimensionen des Rechts, Festschrift für Daphne-Ariane Simotta [European and International Dimension of Law, Festschrift for Daphne-Ariane Simotta] (pp. 39–56). Vienna: LexisNexis.Google Scholar
  2. Berlin, C. (2014). Alternative Streitbeilegung in Verbraucherkonflikten [Alternative Dispute Resolution in Consumer Conflicts]. ReiseRecht aktuell, 5, 210–215.Google Scholar
  3. Bollweg, H.-G. (2013). Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in the aviation sector in Germany. German Journal of Air and Space Law, 3, 398–409.Google Scholar
  4. Bundesamt für Justiz [Federal Office of Justice]. (n.d.). Schlichtungsstelle Luftverkehr [Arbitration Board for Air Traffic]. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://www.bundesjustizamt.de/DE/Themen/Buergerdienste/Luftverkehr/Schlichtungsstelle_node.html
  5. Cortés, P. (2016). Enforcing EU consumer policy more effectively: A three-pronged approach. In S. Drake & M. Smith (Eds.), New directions in the effective enforcement of EU Law and Policy (pp. 202–230). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.Google Scholar
  6. Damania, R., & Round, D. (2000). The economics of consumer protection: Introduction. Australian Economic Papers, 39(9), 403–407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Decker, C. (2017). Concepts of consumer in competition, regulatory, and consumer protection policies. Journal of Competition Law & Economics, 13, 151–184.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. EUclaim. (n.d.). Problems with your Flight? [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://www.euclaim.co.uk/
  9. European Court of Justice [EU-Decisions]. (2009). Sturgeon v Condor Flugdienst GmbH (C-402/07). [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?qid=1528460175108&uri=CELEX:62007CJ0402 and as another example in 2009: Böck, Lepuschitz v Air France SA (C-432/07). [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:62007CJ0402
  10. European Parliament and Council. (2004). Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 February 2004 establishing common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding and of cancellation or long delay of flights, and repealing Regulation (EEC) No 295/91. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=uriserv:OJ.L_.2004.046.01.0001.01.ENG&toc=OJ:L:2004:046:TOC
  11. European Parliament and Council. (2013a). Proposal for a REGULATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL amending Regulation (EC) No 261/2004 establishing common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding and of cancellation or long delay of flights and Regulation (EC) No 2027/97 on air carrier liability in respect of the carriage of passengers and their baggage by air, COM/2013/0130 final – 2013/0072 (COD). [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=CELEX:52013PC0130
  12. European Parliament and Council. (2013b). Directive 2013/11/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 May 2013 on alternative dispute resolution for consumer disputes and amending Regulation (EC) No 2006/2004 and Directive 2009/22/EC (Directive on consumer ADR). [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?qid=1484606267841&uri=CELEX:32013L0011
  13. Finanztip. (2017). Mehr als ein Drittel der Deutschen kennt seine Rechte als Fluggast nicht [More than one third of the Germans do not know their rights as air passenger]. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from http://www.presseportal.de/pm/112681/3686120
  14. Flightright. (n.d.). Our costs – Clear and transparent. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://www.flightright.co.uk/costs?_ga=2.12883767.1696596287.1528459070-1651412764.1528459070
  15. Geier, A. (2016). Zivilrechtliche Durchsetzung der Fluggastrechte – eine Belastung für Fluggesellschaften und Verbraucher [Enforcement of air passenger rights under Civil Law – A Burdon for airlines and consumers]. European Journal of Business Law, EuZW, 773–778.Google Scholar
  16. Hodges, C., Benöhr, I., & Creutzfeldt-Banda, N. (2012). Consumer ADR in Europe. Oxford: HART.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Kowalewski, R. (2017). Flugverspätungen nehmen zu [Delays in air traffic increase]. RP Online. [e-journal] Accessed August 15, 2017, from http://www.rp-online.de/wirtschaft/flugverspaetungen-nehmen-zu-aid-1.6852002
  18. Rott, P. (2016). Claims management services: An alternative to ADR? European Review of Private Law, 24, 143–159.Google Scholar
  19. Scherer, K. (2016). Automatisch recht bekommen [Winning the case automatically]. Zeit Online [e-journal] Accessed August 15, 2017, from <http://www.zeit.de/2016/40/legal-tech-algorithmen-juristen-ersatz
  20. Schiefelbusch, M. (2009). Neutral alternative dispute settlement – Concepts for Ombudspersons and Arbitration Boards. In M. Schiefelbusch & H. L. Dienel (Eds.), Public transport and its users (pp. 53–70). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  21. Schlichtungsstelle für den öffentlichen Personenverkehr (söp) [Conciliation Body for Public Transport in Germany]. (2014). Verfahrensordnung [rules of procedure]. [pdf] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://soep-online.de/assets/files/Verfahrensordnung/soep-Verfahrensordnung.pdf
  22. Schlichtungsstelle für den öffentlichen Personenverkehr (söp) [Conciliation Body for Public Transport in Germany]. (2017a). Welcome to söp – the German Conciliation Body for Public Transport. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://soep-online.de/welcome.html
  23. Schlichtungsstelle für den öffentlichen Personenverkehr (söp) [Conciliation Body for Public Transport in Germany] (2017b). Mitglieder des Trägervereins [Members of the Association]. [pdf] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://soep-online.de/assets/files/31.07.sop_Mitgliederliste.pdf
  24. Schlichtungsstelle für den öffentlichen Personenverkehr (söp) [Conciliation Body for Public Transport in Germany]. (2017c). Jahresbericht 2016 [Annual Report]. [pdf] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://soep-online.de/assets/files/Marz_sop_Jahresbericht-2016.pdf
  25. Steer Davies Gleave (SDG). (2010). Evaluation of Regulation 261/2004, Final Report. [pdf] Accessed August 15, 2017, from http://ec.europa.eu/transport/sites/transport/files/themes/passengers/studies/doc/2010_02_evaluation_of_regulation_2612004.pdf
  26. Steer Davies Gleave (SDG). (2012). Exploratory study on the application and possible revision of Regulation 261/2004, Final Report. [pdf] Accessed August 15, 2017, from http://ec.europa.eu/transport/sites/transport/files/themes/passengers/studies/doc/2012-07-exploratory-study-on-the-application-and-possible-revision-of-regulation-261-2004.pdf
  27. Your Europe. (2017). Rail passenger rights. [online] Accessed August 15, 2017, from https://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/travel/passenger-rights/rail/index_en.htm

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.German University of Administrative Sciences SpeyerSpeyerGermany

Personalised recommendations