Delta Air Lines has settled a class-action lawsuit and will pay millions to disgruntled passengers who were upset by flight cancellations during the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Delta will pay refunds and 7% interest in cash or credits to those who filed valid claims, with a $27.3 million fund for the payments.
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The Atlanta-based airline will also pay attorneys’ fees and other expenses, the outlet said.
According to documents filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, a total of 14,096 people filed claims by the Sept. 15 deadline, with approximately 19% of the customers eligible for refunds.
The settlement reached in May was approved Thursday by U.S. District Judge Eleanor Ross.
Delta did not admit any wrongdoing in the settlement.
In a statement to Fox News Digital, a Delta spokesperson said that the airline does not “admit or acknowledge” that they failed to fulfill their contract of carriage or that it failed to provide refunds to customers.
“In the settlement agreement from May 2023, Delta does not admit or acknowledge it failed to follow its contract of carriage or that it failed to provide refunds in accordance with its contract of carriage,” a Delta spokesperson said.
Delta CEO Ed Bastian previously told the Department of Transportation that the carrier issued $6 billion in refunds for disrupted flights since the beginning of 2020.
“Since the beginning of 2020, Delta refunded over 11 million tickets totaling $6 billion, of which 20% took place in 2022,” a Delta spokesperson said.
The dispute stems from mass flight cancellations at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021.
According to the lawsuit, Delta Air Lines refused to provide passengers cash refunds, giving them instead travel credit for future travel plans on flights that the airline canceled between March 1, 2020, and April 20, 2021.
The plaintiffs argued that while they received ticket credits, they should have received cash refunds in accordance with the ticket agreement. The lawsuit also accused the airline of not delivering refunds in a timely manner.