Personal injury law firmPeterson & Associates, P.C. informs families dealing with the recentMalaysia Airlines incident that they may be able to recover financial compensation from several different sources.
Families may pursue compensation by leveraging international treaties, challenging airline insurance policies and pursuing responsible governments. The extent to which families will be successful in these efforts depends on many factors.
The Montreal Convention is an international treaty that governs and limits the amount of money that injured passengers and their families may recover after an airline accident. It is possible that families can sue for compensation beyond what they are entitled to under theMontreal Convention.
According to a July 17, 2014article by the New York Times, Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was struck by what is thought to be a “surface-to-air missile system” while en route fromAmsterdam toKuala Lumpur. The plane was struck while flying over easternUkraine. All 298 passengers and crew members were killed. Surface missiles aimed atUkraine government aircraft have blasted the region’s airspace in recent weeks.
The fact that the plane’s flight path included a conflict-ridden region is highly relevant for liability purposes.
Questions about liability, compensation and responsibility are already at the forefront of the discussions about the plane’s destruction. International forensic teams are patiently waiting to access the bodies and review the contents of the black boxes. Until then, families and their legal teams are in a state of limbo.
Though Malaysian authorities have been able to retrieve the plane’s black boxes, much of the site is still inaccessible to safety officials and investigators. Ultimately, families and their attorneys are highly dependent on the outcome of the investigation. The results of any legitimate investigation will determine the nature of the claims families may make and the nature of defenses that the airline, the insurance companies and the nations involved can assert.
While it is not entirely clear who will ultimately be held responsible for the airline accident, Kansas City-based accident injury law firm Peterson & Associates, P.C. is investigating the legal terrain governing the accident and urges families of American victims to contact their law offices to further discuss their legal options.