Class action against Air Canada

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Me Andrea Roulet. Sources: Slater Vecchio and Shutterstock

A request for class action authorization targets Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge and Jazz Aviation, which allegedly did not compensate travelers as the rules require them to do.

the plaintiff, Michele Dussault, a resident of Carignan, booked a round-trip cruise from Cape-Liberty, New Jersey, to Bermuda for herself, her husband, two children and their companions. The cruise was scheduled for the week of Sunday, July 31, 2022 through Saturday, July 7, 2022.

The application for approval of a class action was filed in the Superior Court by Mr. Andrea Rouletteattorney at Slater Vecchio.

Ms Dussault is also booking seats on flight AC8938, operated by Air Canada, which will enable her to reach Newark Airport from Montreal to arrive the day before departure on the maritime cruise.

On July 30, 2022, while in a taxi en route to Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau Airport, the plaintiff received a text message from Air Canada informing her of the cancellation of flight AC8938 due to crew restrictions. The same message informs Mrs. Dussault that her flight will be replaced by a connecting flight in Toronto, which will take off at noon instead of 5:00 p.m. 8:25 as scheduled in the initial flight.

The plaintiff points out that Air Canada forced her to take a flight departing more than three hours later than the scheduled flight.

And the plaintiff’s son is moved on a flight that arrives in Newark more than 12 hours after the originally scheduled arrival.

Fearing that replacement flights may also be canceled, all travelers decide to reach New Jersey by car. During the journey, the claimant contacted Air Canada to inform it of the rejection of the arrangements proposed by the airline. Her contact told her that she was entitled to a refund of the cost of the canceled flight AC8939.

However, Mrs. Dussault did not receive this compensation. In return, she had to pay a total of $447.76 to get to the port in New Jersey. She therefore submitted a claim to Air Canada on August 8, 2022. Air Canada rejected this claim on the grounds that the crew restrictions that led to the cancellation of flight AC8939 were necessary for safety reasons.

According to the plaintiff, nothing allows him to know how the restrictions that led to the cancellation of the initial flight are related to security reasons.

Travelers should be entitled to mandatory compensation payments for inconvenience when they were “notified of a flight disruption caused by foreseeable and resilient personnel problems within the defendants’ control 14 days or less before their initial departure time, causing them to reach their destination at least 3 hours later than the arrival time indicated on their ticket”, points out the request, which is based on the Air Passenger Protection Regulations.

The plaintiff is asking the Superior Court to accept her appointment to represent “all passengers on flights operated by Air Canada or codeshare subject to the APPR between December 15, 2019 and the date this action is allowed as a class action, which reached their destination at least 3 hours after scheduled arrival due to flight interruptions due to staffing problems or crew restrictions, of which they were informed within 14 days of their scheduled departure time and for which Air Canada denied them compensation for inconvenience on the grounds that this flight interruption was necessary for security reasons”.

Ms. Dussault is requesting that the defendants be ordered to pay compensatory damages to the members of the class and to pay them each $1,000 in punitive damages. It also claims that the defendants must “fulfill their obligation to inform each class member of the factual reasons for the flight disruption”.

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