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Thursday , November 15 2018

Airline ordered to pay Kuwaiti woman for broken seat

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 12: In an unprecedented judicial verdict, the Court of Cassation ordered a foreign airline to pay a Kuwaiti female passenger the value of 271.825 grams of pure gold in Kuwaiti dinars, which should not be less than the sum suggested by the Court of Appeals in a previous ruling, in addition to legal fees of KD 300 in compensation for sitting on a broken chair in the first class on her return flight from London.

It is noteworthy the Court of First Instance had recommended KD 3,000 compensation, while the Court of Appeals modified it to KD 4,000 in favor of the woman. Plaintiff lawyer Adel Al-Abdulhadi explained that his client traveled with the airline to London for private business and tourism.

She paid KD 2,410 for a first class round trip, but she was shocked to find the seat allotted broken without hand rest. The ground services staff offered to change her seat to economy class with compensation but she rejected the offer right away since she had paid in full for first class.

She was dumbfounded the airline staff abandoned her at Heathrow Airport lounge without response to her enquiries. She got reprieve only after 24 hours when one ground service staff agreed to change her booking without compensation or special services or hotel accommodation. She was exposed to physical and psychological damages beyond imagination, and left Heathrow Airport in search of accommodation by herself. She was disappointed the airline did not tender any apology or compensate her upon return to Kuwait.

‘Not in the system’: The Court of First Instance has ordered Ministry of Interior to pay compensation of KD 2,000 to a Kuwaiti citizen for issuing a passport that does not exist in the system of the ministry. According to the case details presented by the plaintiff counsel Lawyer Ali Al-Ali, his client was to travel to the UK to accompany his sick father after all visa arrangements were made. He checked-in and proceeded to immigration section to get his passport stamped only to be told that his passport does not exist in the system. He ended up missing the fl ight and was unable to travel with his father due to the mistake made by the ministry. Even though his client was later issued with a new passport and had obtained a new visa, Lawyer Al-Ali said his client had incurred material losses through the ticket fare and the expenses to obtain new visa, as well as emotional stress as his sick father had to travel without him. The court ruled that the complainant should be compensated as a result of the ministry’s mistake.

By Jaber Al-Hamoud Al-Seyassah Staff

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