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Expert Advice Tabs

23.01.17
Added by: Davide Cecchinato (Adiconsum - Consumer Association)

The European Small Claims procedure is designed to simplify and speed up cross-border claims of up to €2000* with no need of legal assistance. Davide Cecchinato, President of the Italian consumer association Adiconsum Verona, shares with us a consumer case. 

The case

After buying a round-trip ticket with a French airline company, a consumer has been denied the chance to board the return flight.

The no-show rule

The consumer has incurred in the so-called "no-show rule": a clause that some airlines include in their terms of use. It basically means that a passenger not showing up for the outbound flight will be considered a no-show, and all the connecting flights, even the return flight, will be cancelled with no refund. Because of this clause, the consumer has been obliged to buy again the round-trip ticket.

The Small Claim Procedure

The Italian Competition Authority considers the no-show rule an unfair commercial practice, as it breaches the legal standards of the Consumer Code. On these grounds, the consumer reached out to Adiconsum Verona and asked our assistance to obtain a refund. After the French Airline has rejected the refund request, we started the European Small Claims Procedure.

Finally, the court has ruled in favor of the consumer, who has been reimbursed by the French airline.

Editor's note: as of 14 July 2017, the threshold rose to €5,000.

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