One question on the minds of many people in the UK is whether they would be able to make flight delay compensation claims for delayed or cancelled flights, after the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union – a process known as Brexit.
At this moment in time, there remains a great deal of confusion and uncertainty as to whether the EU directive 261, which guarantees passengers compensation of up to £510 for delayed or cancelled flights of more than three hours, will still be upheld and applied by the British government, after the country leaves the European Union.
Jim Fitzpatrick a former Aviation minister in the last Labour government, sent a letter to John Hayes, the current Aviation minister as to whether the EU flight delay laws would still apply after Brexit. Mr Hayes refused to confirm that the laws enshrining the right of passengers to claim compensation would still apply.
Mr Hayes was asked by Jim Fitzpatrick, an aviation minister in the last Labour government to clarify the position of the rule both in the run-up to Brexit and afterwards.
He confirmed that the rule, which provides substantial compensation for passengers when flights are delayed or cancelled, would remain in force until Britain leaves the EU.
But he pointedly avoided making any commitment about the future of the EU 261 afterwards.
“The Government is considering the impacts of the decision to leave the European Union, including future arrangements for existing legislation,” he said.
It all hinges on the terms of Great Repeal Bill which is being introduced to overturn the European Communities Act, which took Britain into what was then the Common Market.
It would be open for MPs to either accept EU 261 as it stands or rewrite the regulations.Existing EU legislation will become part of domestic law, which can be changed by Parliament without having Brussels’ approval.