Four U.S. Airlines Fined for Failing to Disclose Correct Bumping Compensation
The Department of Transportation announced last Friday that it had fined four American carriers, namely Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines, for not providing accurate information to passengers regarding how much compensation was offered for being bumped from a flight.
The misinformation provided by the airlines also pertained to the amount of compensation to be given to passengers for luggage that was lost, damaged, or otherwise delayed.
“We are committed to ensuring that air travelers know the rules and have accurate information about compensation when they are bumped from flights and for lost, damaged, or delayed baggage,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
The government agency fined United $35,000, Alaska and Southwest $40,000 each, and American $45,000.
According to the Department of Transportation, passengers become eligible for compensation when they are bumped from an oversold flight against their will. The amount of compensation is dependent upon several factors, among them the extent of the delay after being bumped.
Federal rules require airlines to explain compensation when bumping passengers from an oversold flight. The agency said that, in the course of routine inspections, the four airlines failed to have the required notices available to passengers or provided out-of-date information. The rules also don’t permit airlines to cap their liability for lose, damaged, or delayed bags at less than $3,500.
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