Southwest Lawsuit Says Airline Refuses Refunds for Canceled Flights
Airlines are hurting for cash and they are refusing or trying to avoid cash refunds to customers. But the Department of Transportation has clarified that airlines must give customers refunds when flights are canceled or significantly delayed during the coronavirus pandemic. So lawsuits have already been filed against United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.
Now the latest airline to face a lawsuit is Southwest. A Pennsylvania man alleges that the airline refused to give him a cash refund for a canceled flight from Baltimore to Havana, Cuba. The route was temporarily suspended on March 22. Lawyers are seeking class action status for thousands of passengers who have fought and failed to get cash back form the airline.
Southwest is one of the most accommodating airlines when it comes to refunds. As long as you cancel your flight more than 10 minutes before its scheduled departure time, you will have the option to receive a refund to your original form of payment or Travel Funds for future use. But the lawsuit claims the airline is refusing to offer cash refunds even though its own contract says it has to. “When Southwest cancels the flight, no matter what kind of ticket you have, they have to offer you a refund if you decline other options,” said Hassan Zavareei, a Washington, D.C.-based lawyer.
Southwest offered two options to Adrian Bombin. The customer could rebook the cancelled flight to a flight that Southwest has not canceled or receive travel credits that can be used through June 30, 2021. Although these options compensate consumers, the lawsuit argues that these remedies are insufficient. Additionally, Southwest’s refusal to give refunds violates federal regulations.
The Southwest Airlines Trip Cancelation Refund Class Action Lawsuit is Adrian Bombin v. Southwest Airlines Co., Case No. 5:20-cv-01883, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.