International Airline Crash FAQ
From Globally-recognized Legal Representatives of International Airline Crashes
International Airline Crashes involve accidents that occur outside of the U.S. borders as well as those that are inbound or returning from overseas to the United States. International airline crashes can be very stressful and intimidating. The laws of foreign countries can limit or shift airlines' liability if they are not signatory members of the Montreal Agreement and significantly reduce the amount of money received in a settlement for the victims and their families.
Highly skilled and experienced aviation attorneys are often required to successfully navigate international airline crash cases, as complex laws and limitations surround these cases. Therefore, it is essential to retain the most experienced aviation litigators. At Wilshire Law Firm, our team has extensive experience and success in litigating international airplane crashes worldwide. Our aviation attorneys have successfully investigated and litigated some of the most high-profile airline crash cases, and our Senior Attorney, Ilyas Akbari, is a renowned authority on aviation law.
What exactly can cause international airline crashes?
In the past few decades, domestic airline crashes have seen a significant decrease due to developments in safety standards, increased surveillance from airline personnel and passengers, and safer aircraft design. However, safety standards and procedures vary by country, increasing the likelihood of experiencing an airline crash as people travel from one country to another.
International airlines also have different requirements and lack clear guidelines for pilot training, safety procedures, and maintenance checks.
As pilot qualifications, training standards, and corporate culture change by country, crew members have to take on more volatility within their duties, which adds to the numerous factors contributing to international airline crashes.
As a result, in-depth investigations by a well-trained and highly experienced legal team are fundamental in identifying the leading causes of an airplane crash. During every case, our investigators conduct a thorough analysis of the different aspects of the international airline crash (such as aircraft design and flight crew training) to hold the negligent parties accountable for the accident.
What should you do if you or a loved one is involved in an international air crash?
Our aviation attorneys have represented victims involved in various types of international airline crashes ranging from sightseeing air tours to military helicopter operations crashing overseas. Our representation extends to cases involving defective aircraft and manufacturing parts sold by domestic and international companies.
Contact us as soon as possible to speak with an experienced aviation attorney to protect your claims and receive total compensation for your losses. Our aviation lawyers have successfully litigated cases involving major national and international airline companies, including:
- Delta Airlines
- Alaska Airlines
- American Airlines
- Pacific Southwest Airlines
- United Airlines
- Ethiopia Airlines
- Asiana Airlines
- U.S. Airways
- Southwest Airlines
- Asiana Airlines
- British European Airways
- China Eastern Airlines
- Korean Air
- McDonnell Douglas
- TACA Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- SAS-Scandinavian Airline Systems
What kinds of international airline cases do you take?
Our firm is highly experienced in representing victims and their families in all aspects involving international airline crashes. These may include:
- Air ambulance accidents
- Airplane fatalities
- Charter accidents
- Death on the High Seas Act (DOHSA)
- Helicopter Accidents
- Montreal Convention
- Private airplane accidents
- Sightseeing tour accidents
- Airline accidents involving international flights
Our outreach goes beyond national borders as our expert aviation attorneys successfully litigate airline crashes worldwide.
Differences in International Airline Crashes
It is essential to understand that the laws that deal with international airline accidents are particular, vary by country, and don't always apply to U.S. airline accidents. The international treaty known as the Montreal Convention serves as the foundation for controlling the legal rights of international travelers to sue airlines for any losses or injuries suffered during a flight. Although less limiting than its predecessor, the Warsaw Convention, the Montreal Convention still limits what types of recovery and where victims or their families can bring a claim.
Our legal team has full knowledge that while limitations prevent specific claims from being brought against an airliner, those same claims can still be pursued against negligent manufacturers, outsourced contractors, or liable third parties. We go to great lengths to conduct thorough investigations to identify all parties at fault and outline the injuries to maximize compensation for our clients.
Representative International Airline Crash Cases
Lawyers from Wilshire Law firm have been involved in some of the most notorious international airline crash cases. Some of these cases include but are not limited to:
Germanwings Flight 4U 9525 Crash: On March 24, 2015, an Airbus A320 operating as Germanwings Flight 4U 9525 was intentionally crashed into the French Alps, 62 miles northwest of Nice, when one of the pilots committed suicide after locking the co-pilot out of the cockpit. The crash resulted in the loss of all 150 people on board.
Senior Partner and experienced aviation litigator Ilyas Akbari led the team that successfully awarded the families of the only two American passengers on the international flight. Although the accident occurred under the operation of an international airline outside the U.S. and despite the airline not having any assets or tax burden in the United States, Ilyas and his team successfully filed and kept the case in the U.S.
He and his team argued that Virginia's long-arm statute granted personal jurisdiction over the airline because Germanwings sold tickets through its authorized agent United Airlines. The outstanding victory resulted in the National Law Journal and ALM Media recognizing Ilyas and his team in 2018 as Elite Trial Lawyers finalists in the Consumer Protection category.
Asiana Airlines Flight 214 Runaway Crash: On July 6, 2013, Asiana Airlines Flight 214, from Incheon Airport in Seoul, South Korea to San Francisco International Airport, crashed during landing due to the pilots' failure to maintain altitude and speed, causing the tail of the Boeing 777 to crash into the seawall, resulting in the death of three passengers and injuring 181 more. After investigating, the National Transportation Safety Board concluded that the leading cause for the crash was the flight crew's mismanagement of the landing.
The investigation noted that the lack of proper training from the pilots and issues with the throttle control system and manual from the Boeing 777 aircraft also contributed to the accident. Our firm represented 25 claimants during this case. Out of the 308 claims on board the airplane, one of Mr. Akbari's clients was the only person to proceed to trial against Asiana Airlines, refusing to be bullied by the airline and its lawyers. Asiana's attorneys settled the case at the very beginning of the trial.
Ethiopian Airlines Fight 302 Crash: On March 10, 2019, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 took off from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Shortly after, all 157 people on board were killed. The victims included citizens from countries like the United States, Britain, Canada, Ethiopia, U.K, Sweden, and many more. The second plane crash also involved a Boeing 737 MAX 8 in less than five months, with similar Flight Data Recorder outputs. Wilshire Law Firm was retained to represent the families of the Ethiopian Airlines crash victims. After a thorough investigation, international regulators concluded that the leading cause for the plane's crash was a defect in the aircraft's automatic control system.