What The Federal Court Said On May 22

Today, TraveLaw Online’s Doug Crozier and Tim Law of Heifetz, Crozier, Law respond to a question from a reader confused about what the Federal Court of Appeal’s May 22, 2020 decision was all about.

QUESTION: I hear that the Federal Court has made a decision about whether it is acceptable for airlines to give vouchers instead of cash refunds, but there seems to be different opinions about what the court actually decided. Please clarify.

ANSWER: The May 22, 2020 decision of the Federal Court of Appeal did not deal with the issue of whether or not airlines can provide customers with vouchers instead of cash refunds.  

It did not deal with that issue at all.  

Instead, it dealt with an interim step in a case by Air Passenger Rights in which it is asking the court to review the Canadian Transportation Agency’s (CTA) public statements on the basis that they violate the CTA’s own Code of Conduct, and misled passengers regarding their rights when their flights are cancelled.

That interim step was a request by Air Passenger Rights that the statements be removed from the CTA website and that the members of the CTA not be allowed to deal with passenger complaints about refunds because its public statements caused a reasonable apprehension of bias on the part of the members.  

The judge rejected both interim requests by Air Passenger Rights and this decision therefore has no effect on the issue of whether or not airlines may or may not provide vouchers instead of cash refunds.

To view the court’s ruling, go to .

Heifetz, Crozier, Law is a Toronto law firm that has for years represented all aspects of the Canadian travel industry. The lawyers at HCL also maintain a non-travel practice, covering litigation, real estate, Wills, corporate/commercial matters, etc. To contact HCL, e-mail [email protected].