Southwest, Delta, United, and American Airlines are the target of a class action lawsuit, alleging that they limited seat availability on their flights to drive up ticket prices. Specifically, it claims the airlines colluded with one another to limit the number of new seats they added and raise airfare despite lower fuel costs. American Airlines has already settled for $45 million, and Southwest for $15 million — though both deny any wrongdoing — while Delta and United have yet to settle.
If you’ve flown with any of these airlines in the past seven years, don’t be surprised if you receive an email with information on the lawsuit. Depending on the direction of the lawsuits, you could be eligible to receive compensation, though the amount would likely be pretty small. To qualify for any compensation, you must have flown Southwest between July 1st, 2011, and December 20th, 2017, or with American Airlines between July 1st, 2011, and June 14th, 2018. Passengers seeking a payout must file a claim form when the claim period opens. This website has more detailed information on how to proceed.
In a statement to the Los Angeles Times, American Airlines continued to deny any illegal or deceptive behavior. “The facts show,” it said, “that American dramatically increased domestic capacity during the period covered by the complaint while taking delivery of hundreds of new aircrafts.” Similarly, a United spokesperson told NBC station WESH, “We will continue to defend ourselves against these claims, which we have always maintained are without merit.”