How to File Aviation Class Action Lawsuits


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Class action lawsuits are defined as a large group of people collectively bringing a claim to court against another person or entity, which might just be an aviation company. An aviation class action lawsuit is defined as a large group of passengers brining a claim to court against an airline for an aviation accident, discrimination against the passengers, illegal hiring and firing practices, inappropriate interactions between crew and passengers, charges and fees not made in good faith and dealing, and even for lost baggage compensation policies. The most common form of aviation class action lawsuits stems from aviation accidents involving deaths or injuries to multiple passengers in the same incident. 

Step 1: Establishing the Existence of a Wrong

The existence of a wrong affecting a large group of people must be present for that group to file the class action lawsuit against the airline or airport. The wrong must be identified in detail in the complaint filed with the court. The wrong could be discrimination, death, harassment, failed compensation for lost luggage, and much more.

Step 2: Hire an Aviation Attorney

A group of people should not file a class action lawsuit against an airport, pilot, or airline without the help of an aviation accident lawyer. An aviation accident lawyer can piece together the case with the help of other lawyers and previous cases dealing with the same or similar claim.  In some instances, federal judges will force multiple, individually filed suits to come under the umbrella of a class action. Hiring an attorney will be at your, or the entire class’, expense before and during the suit proceedings.  In some instances, an attorney or entire legal team may work on your class action suit on contingency basis. 

Step 3: File the Aviation Injury Lawsuit

Once the aviation attorney has been hired, the class action suit should be filed against the pilot, airline, or airport. The lawsuit can be filed for damages caused by negligence or a defective piece of the plane that caused the accident. If the plane were found to have defective pieces, the manufacturer of the plane would be sued in the lawsuit.  In reality, manufacturers, designers, operators, and even marketers associated with airline accident can be held liable during a class-action aviation accident suit. 

Step 4: Serve the Defendant

Once the lawsuit has been filed with the court, the defendant must be served notice of the lawsuit. This allows the defendant time to prepare a defense and reply to the serve notice. The defendant can reply in any manner they choose, which may be countersuits, attempts to settle the issue, attempts to engage in alternative dispute resolutions, outright contesting the plaintiff’s claims, or ignoring the suit, which would result in an unfavorable default judgment against the defendant.   

Step 5: Appearing in Court

Some class action lawsuits head to court, while the vast majority of others are settled out of court.  Before an actual case is heard by a judge, both parties will most likely engage in a long, complicated series of litigation maneuvers, which only a small number of experienced aviation attorneys can accurately navigate.  In many cases of class actions, the defendant is an entity that cannot deny the occurrence of an aviation accident, such as a commercial airline or private chartered flight.  Every aviation accident involves some form of FAA and NTSB investigation.  These results are commonly a good basis of gauging the liability each party may have had in the aviation accident.  Depending on the number of plaintiffs and the damages they request, a defendant company can negotiate a settlement outside of the courts, which shields them from larger financial losses, can make the entire case confidential, and prevent future litigation stemming from the aviation accident. 

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