Travelling in the air is something many of us do each year for holidays, commuting or visiting family around the world. Luckily, aeroplanes are one of the safest forms of transport and most flights go without a hitch. However, if you’ve suffered an injury on a flight, it can really ruin your trip. This guide on air accident claims will show you that if your accident was caused by somebody else’s negligence, you could be awarded compensation. We’ll show you how you could sue an airline or holiday company if you’ve been injured on an aeroplane and look at how much compensation you could receive.
Our team of advisors is ready to help you start an air accident claim. They offer an initial consultation where you’ll receive free legal advice after your claim has been reviewed. You’re under no obligation to proceed but we could introduce you to one of our personal injury solicitors if your case appears strong enough. They’ll deal with everything on a No Win No Fee basis if the claim is taken on meaning there won’t be any legal fees due unless you are awarded compensation.
To find out more about being compensated for an air accident, please read on. Or, if you’d like to discuss your claim right away, please call us on 0800 6524 881.
Table of contents
- The Montreal Convention
- Am I Eligible To Make An Air Accident Claim?
- Common Air Accident Claims
- Common Injuries On Aeroplanes
- How Much Compensation For An Air Accident Could I Claim?
- Evidence To Support An Air Accident Claim
- Time Limits For Making A Claim For An Air Accident
- Starting The Air Accident Claims Process
When making an air accident claim, you’re likely to be covered by the Montreal Convention 1999. This agreement between various countries including the UK sets the rules for compensation claims relating to in-flight accidents. It also means that you can make your claim from your home country regardless of which country you were flying over at the time you were injured.
The convention covers passengers flying between two countries that have signed up to its rules. Therefore, if you’re injured during a domestic flight within the UK, it will not apply. However, you could still be compensated for any injuries suffered in the aircraft caused by the airline’s negligence.
With a normal personal injury claim, you need to prove that somebody with a duty of care has caused an accident in which you were injured because they were negligent. However, according to the Montreal Convention, you do not necessarily have to prove fault. Instead, you need to show that:
- You had an accident;
- It happened during a flight or while embarking or disembarking from the plane;
- You were injured during the accident.
The definition of an accident according to the Montreal Convention is an ‘unexpected or unusual event that is external to the passenger’ i.e. you did not cause the accident yourself.
Later on in this guide, we’ll explain the types of evidence that you could use to support an air accident claim.
In this section, we’ve provided details of some of the most common aeroplane accidents that can lead to compensation claims. They include:
- Items falling from overhead lockers. If you’re injured by something that fell on you from an overhead locker you may wish to claim for any head, neck or back injuries that were sustained.
- Burns or scalds. This is a fairly common cause of air accident claims. If you have had a hot drink spilt on you during a flight, you could be compensated for your suffering.
- Trolley accidents. You may be able to make a flight injury claim if you were crushed by a food or drinks trolley in the plane’s aisles or if one struck your arm or leg while you were seated.
- Slips, trips and falls. These are another common type of accident on a plane. They can often lead to ankle sprains, strains or even fractures of the arms or broken wrists.
- Allergic reactions. Being served food on a plane that causes an allergic reaction could entitle you to claim compensation. That is especially true if you informed staff of your allergy or the packaging or menu did not clearly declare the presence of an allergen.
- Damaged seats. Claims may be possible for injuries sustained in your seat such as lacerations from jagged edges or where your seat or the seat in front of you collapses.
- Runway collisions. While very rare, planes do sometimes clip buildings, vehicles or other planes while taxing. Injuries sustained in such an accident could result in a claim.
Our solicitors could help you to claim for any injury sustained on a plane. Please call our team today if you’d like to check if you could make a No Win No Fee air accident claim.
Some of the most common injuries that result in air accident claims include:
The severity of your injuries will be determined by an independent medical assessment (as required by the air accident claims process). The amount of compensation you’ll claim will be based on the prognosis outlined by a medical expert following the assessment.
If you’ve been injured on a plane and would like to begin a compensation claim, please call our team today.
If your air accident claim is taken on by one of our specialist solicitors, they’ll try to secure as much compensation as possible for your suffering. This could include general damages to cover your injuries and special damages to compensate for any financial losses.
Depending on how you’ve suffered, compensation for an air accident could cover:
- Pain caused by your injuries or treatment.
- Mental harm caused by conditions like anxiety, depression or distress.
- Any negative impact your air accident injuries have on your usual hobbies and activities.
- Care costs if your injuries mean you require support from a carer, friend or family member.
- Medical expenses including the cost of physiotherapy or private hospital treatment.
- Loss of earnings if you needed time off work to recover from the air accident.
- Related travel expenses.
- The cost of replacing items including luggage damaged during the accident.
- Mobility aids or home adaptations if you’ve suffered a long-term injury or disability.
- Future income loss for longer-term injuries that reduce your ability to earn.
Please let us know if you’re thinking of making an air accident claim and we’ll review what you could be compensated for.
We can’t say exactly what settlement you may be awarded until your injuries have been properly assessed. However, you can use our air accident compensation calculator below to get some idea about potential compensation levels:
These figures are based on guidelines from the Judicial College. The amounts shown might differ in claims based on the Montreal Convention.
To try and prove that you suffered an injury during an in-flight accident, your solicitor will work with you to secure evidence to support your air accident claim. This could include:
- Photographic evidence. Following an accident on a plane, you should take photographs of the root cause before it’s removed. Also, take pictures of any visible injuries.
- Medical evidence. Your solicitor can request medical records and x-rays to prove the extent of your injuries. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to seek proper medical treatment.
- Witness details. You should also ask any witnesses for their contact details and supply them to your solicitor. If the claim is contested, witness statements could help prove how you were injured.
- Video recordings. If anybody recorded your accident on their phone, ask them to send you a copy of the footage.
- Accident reports. You should always report your air accident to the cabin crew and your holiday company. A copy of your accident report should make it easier to prove that an accident occurred.
If you’re injured on a plane and decide to make an air accident claim, you’ll need to do so within the time limit. This will be:
- 2 years from the date of the accident if your claim is based on the Montreal Convention.
- 3 years from the date of the accident if claiming against a holiday provider.
We would suggest contacting one of our specialist advisers about your claim sooner rather than later to avoid missing the deadline for claiming.
The easiest way to begin the air accident claims process is to call our advice centre on 0800 6524 881 today. During your call, an advisor will review your claim, provide legal advice and explain your options for free.
If your claim is accepted, you won’t need to pay legal fees upfront. Instead, a success fee would be deducted from your compensation if the claim is won. If the claim fails, you won’t pay any legal fees at all.
Please let us know if you have further questions about making an air accident claim via our free live chat service.