CANADIAN PASSENGER PROTECTION REGULATIONS TO TAKE EFFECT ON JULY 15, 2019

The Canadian Transport Authority (CTA) Air Passenger Protection Regulations will take effect on July 15, 2019. All flights to, from, and within Canada (including connecting flights) will be covered by the new rules (i.e., a flight from Shanghai to New York via Toronto would be covered). CTA is rolling out the new requirements in a two-part process.  Rules governing tarmac delays, denied boarding, lost and damaged luggage, carrier responsibilities to provide certain real-time notices, and penalties for noncompliance with these requirements are among the included topics and will take effect July 15th.  On December 15, 2019, the remaining regulations will come into effect, including rules governing compensation for delays and cancellations, refunds, food service during long tarmac delays, and seating children with their families.

In complying with the regulations, carriers will need to provide specific disclosures when a key event occurs, and will be required to take remedial steps depending on the situation and the amount of control the carrier exercises over the source of the problem.  For example, when the rules become effective passengers generally must be allowed to disembark after a tarmac delays exceeds three hours. Regarding compensation for flight delays, the rules fix amounts due for delays (e.g. C$400 for 3-6 hours) and denied boarding (e.g. C$900 for less than 6 hours) – with escalating amounts the longer the delay persists – the rules will also impose requirements on carriers to provide food, communications, rebooking on other carriers, or overnight accommodations in certain situations.  Regarding children, the rules will require carriers to seat children under the age of 14 with their parents at no additional cost and will incorporate ICAO standards on unaccompanied minors. Depending on the provision or regulation violated, carriers can be fined up to C$25,000 for any violation(s).

In addition to complying with the regulations, carriers will be required to update their tariffs, policies and websites accordingly.  Please let us know if we can assist or answer any questions regarding these new rules.

If you have any questions, please contact Evelyn Sahr (esahr@eckertseamans.com or 202-659-6622); Drew Derco (dderco@eckertseamans.com or 202-659-6665), or Alexander Matthews (amatthews@eckertseamans.com or 202-659-6633).

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Authors

Evelyn D. Sahr

Member - Washington, D.C.

Drew M. Derco

Member - Washington, D.C.

Alexander E. Matthews

Associate - Washington, D.C.