For some, flying is stressful. For others, it’s the beginning of an adventure. But everyone knows that when you get on a plane, there’s a certain amount of risk in traveling. However, no one expects to board a flight and leave with a physical injury. When an airline is responsible for injuring a Florida passenger, the airline may be accountable.
When an airline passenger suffers a physical injury while embarking or disembarking on a plane, the only available recourse is to sue the airline for recovery under the Montreal Convention, which trumps any state law claims the passenger could bring. The Convention requires that the passenger bring suit within two years of the date of arrival at the destination.
In a recent appellate case, a plaintiff was on a flight to London when he was accused of stealing a crew member’s bag. Although the bag was found later, the airline refused to let the plaintiff disembark the flight. The plaintiff was an older gentleman who recently had surgery on his leg and had not yet fully recovered. When the airline turned the man over to the authorities, he was marched around the airport to multiple locations while being forced to carry his luggage with no help. Despite showing obvious signs of exhaustion, pain, and distress, the plaintiff was never given an opportunity to sit down. After denying the accusations against him to a police officer, the officer told him he was free to go.
Almost three years later, the plaintiff sued the airline, arguing that it had falsely arrested and wrongly imprisoned him. The plaintiff argued that although he had missed the two-year deadline when he sued, his injury occurred after he disembarked from the flight and was outside the scope of the Montreal Convention. The district court dismissed his case.
On appeal, the circuit court affirmed the lower court’s decision to dismiss the case. The plaintiff’s injury, the court reasoned, had begun during the flight, and was thus subject to the Montreal Convention. Because the plaintiff filed his case after the two-year statute of limitations, his claim was time-barred.
Cases involving injuries while flying can be complex and governed by specific laws that are not common knowledge to the public. Had the plaintiff contacted an experienced attorney before his deadline to file a claim, he may have been able to recover from his injuries. Thus, potential plaintiffs who have been injured while on a flight are encouraged to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to go over their claims in a consultation.
Have You Been Injured While on Board an Aircraft?
If you or someone you know has been severely injured Florida slip and fall accident while on an airplane, or any other type of airplane injury, contact the attorneys at Friedman, Rodman Frank& Estrada, P.A. The lawyers at our firm understand how challenging it can be to bring a claim after an accident. Because of the complexities of these cases, hiring a compassionate, experienced attorney is key to receiving the compensation you deserve after your injury. Our lawyers advocate tirelessly on behalf of our clients. Contact our office today at 877-448-8585 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney at Friedman, Rodman Frank & Estrada, P.A.