MH370 families line up to sue Malaysia Airlines before deadline

World Today

Malaysia Missing PlaneA Malaysian woman lights a candle during a special prayer for the ill fated Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 at a church in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Tuesday, March 8, 2016. The prayer marked the second anniversary of the jet’s March 8, 2014, disappearance. (AP Photo/Joshua Paul)

Families of MH370 victims gathered outside a Beijing court on Monday to file lawsuits before the two-year deadline for legal action against the carrier.

CCTV’s Ning Hong reports.

MH370 families sue Malaysia Airlines before deadline

Families of MH370 victims gathered outside a Beijing court on Monday to file lawsuits before the two-year deadline for legal action against the carrier.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 disappeared on March 8, 2014, while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. It was carrying 239 passengers, most of them Chinese.

Two years on, Wen Wancheng, whose son was among those who disappeared on board the ill-fated flight, does not remember how many times he has since traveled to Beijing.

He and the families of other passengers have been waiting for an answer that they may never get and do their best to support each other through the ordeal.

However, they have decided not to wait anymore and to file a lawsuit against Malaysia Airlines.

Their decision came after Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai urged the families to file claims under the Montreal Convention against Malaysia Airlines by March 8 in order to preserve their legal rights.

The Montreal Convention sets a limitation of two years to file claims. 

Wen said he does not believe Malaysia Airlines and Boeing have fulfilled their duties and responsibilities, and he wants them to provide compensation.

The Beijing railway transport court has been designated to accept these cases. Many have already filed claims ranging from financial compensation and support, to the continuation of search and rescue operations.

This may be the last chance for these families to file claims against Malaysia Airlines, but with the search for MH370 still under way, the lawsuits are likely to be long and full of uncertainty.

Wu Chen is a lawyer representing the families of 15 passengers.

“The priority is to get the benefits for the passengers’ families. According to relevant international conventions, the compensation suits should be related to Malaysia Airlines’ compensation capacity and willingness. Malaysia Airlines was restructured in 2015. The original company’s compensation capability decreased because its assets were greatly reduced. So that is why we have involved the new Malaysia Airlines Berhad to make sure it takes full accountability,” he said.

So far, only three pieces of possible debris from the plane have been found, and only one has been confirmed as coming from the plane. It is still unclear whether the search will continue indefinitely.


Airline tech consultant Michael Planey on the two year anniversary of MH370

CCTV America’s Elaine Reyes spoke to Michael Planey, an airline technology consultant at HMPlaney Consultants.

Airline tech consultant Michael Planey on the two year anniversary of MH370

CCTV America's Elaine Reyes spoke to Michael Planey, an airline technology consultant at HMPlaney Consultants.