Southwest Airlines Sued for Denying Passenger Refunds During Cancellation Chaos

A Southwest Airlines passenger filed a lawsuit for receiving a credit instead of a refund

Photo: Kevin Dietsch (Getty Images)

A Southwest Airlines passenger filed a proposed class motion lawsuit towards the airline on Friday, claiming the corporate didn’t refund passengers’ cash amidst hundreds of cancellations following a extreme winter storm that swept by way of the U.S.

In the lawsuit, Eric Capdeville, says he bought tickets for himself and his daughter for flights from New Orleans, Louisiana to Portland, Oregon set to depart on December 27, however upon arrival on the airport, Capdeville says within the lawsuit, he was knowledgeable his flight had been canceled.

Southwest Airlines was not in a position to ebook Capdeville on one other flight and in accordance with the lawsuit obtained by Gizmodo, he was “not given a refund, but was only offered a credit for use on a future flight.”

The criticism says Southwest Airlines is in breach of part 9 of the Contract of Carriage which states if the service cancels the flight as a consequence of service interruptions, they need to “transport the passenger at no additional charge on the carrier’s next flight” to their vacation spot, or “refund the unused portion of the passenger’s fare.”

Capdeville’s lawyer didn’t instantly reply to Gizmodo’s request for remark.

Southwest canceled round 5,400 of its flights in lower than 48 hours starting on December 26, leaving passengers stranded as storms raged throughout elements of the South and Midwest.

As different airways recovered from the storm, Southwest continued canceling flights and didn’t resume regular operations till December 30. The firm’s lagging response to the storm has prompted an investigation by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg referred to as the airline’s disruptions “unacceptable” in a letter to Southwest’s CEO, Bob Jordan on Thursday, including, “Americans expect when they purchase an airline ticket that they will arrive at their destination safely, reliably, and affordably.”

Jordan mentioned in a video posted on Wednesday, “I’m truly sorry … we have some real work to do in making this right.” Jordan insisted the corporate was “making headway” and mentioned he was “optimistic to be back on track before next week.”

A Southwest Airlines spokesperson didn’t touch upon the pending litigation however mentioned in an electronic mail to Gizmodo, “There are several high-priority efforts underway to do right by our Customers, including processing refunds from canceled flights, and reimbursing Customers for expenses incurred as a result of the irregular operations.”

However, she didn’t instantly reply questions relating to if and the way passengers can get a refund to their bank cards as a substitute of an airline credit score. The spokesperson as a substitute informed us folks can go to their journey disruption web page for extra data associated to requesting refunds.

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