PSU4Lyfe, on 14 April 2017 - 08:26 AM, said:
His attorney ran point on the NHL/NFL concussion lawsuits.
Leadership and process failures on United's part. First, they created an overbooking policy that is designed almost solely to protect their profitability. Not only that but the policy was created that left enforcement with the lowest levels of the organizational chain. Then those people have to outsource enforcement to the airport police force. In short, leadership created a policy that they couldn't enforce on their own.
That is bad enough but they likely constrained the people implementing the policy. I'm guessing but the gate agents were probably only authorized to offer up to $800 in credits. That meant that if no one settled for that, they had to take people who paid off the flight, which again is completely one sided. Once that happened, the gate agents had to call the civil authorities to settle a contractual problem. Quite honestly, the police had no business being there. This was a civil issue, not a legal issue. So the constraints placed on the employees and the one-sided policy created a problem.
United is completely in the wrong. They made a contractual agreement to fly that person to his destination. While there may be language on the ticket about bumping passengers, it is likely not legally enforceable since it is completely one sided.
If they are going to have an over booking policy (and they shouldn't), it should have include a hotline to management so gate agents can authorize higher payments for voluntary bumps. Airports should have their own policy that they will not intervene in contractual issues with passengers. That passenger did nothing wrong in a legal sense. The only thing he did was violate and likely enforceable contract clause.
You can bet that every airline is highly pissed with United now. The cost of bumping people from flight just went up astronomically. I know that I will not volunteer to get off a flight until they make at least a four-digit offer for cash.
This was pure greed on United's part. They overbook as a rule to protect their profitability. They didn't make a reasonable offer to get volunteers, again because it's money out of their pocket. They didn't use their reciprocity agreement, likely because of cost. They didn't find another way, like flying the crew to Cincinnati and letting them drive to Louisville. They didn't even try to get another crew. They took the easiest and what they thought would be the least expensive way to clear four passenger seats for their employees. They were greedy and now they are going to pay much, much more than they would have, had they not been so greedy.
People say I am ruthless. I am not ruthless. And if I find the man who is calling me ruthless, I shall destroy him.
Robert F. Kennedy
Moral courage is a more rare commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence.
Robert F. Kennedy
Day of commemoration to honor the Victims of Bowling Green, April 1, 2017.