Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Delta Airlines argues it has a legal right to screw you over

Will this come as a surprise to frequent fliers? Airlines say they have the legal right to treat their most loyal passengers unfairly and in bad faith.

That is what Paul Clement, a lawyer representing Delta Air Lines Inc., told the Supreme Court Tuesday, in a case involving a suburban Minneapolis rabbi, Binyomin Ginsberg, who was kicked out of a frequent-flier program for what the carrier deemed "abuse" of his membership. ...

Rabbi Ginsberg says the airline told him he complained too much and booked reservations on full flights with the intention of being bumped for compensation. ...

He filed suit, alleging that the airline violated a duty Minnesota law implies in every contract—that of good faith and fair dealing. ...

Delta argued that the federal Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, which pre-empts state regulation "relating to rates, routes, or services of any air carrier," also nullified any implied duty under state law to administer frequent flier programs fairly and in good faith.
--Jess Bravin, WSJ, on what many of us already suspected