In June 2014, Arthur J. Park’s article Aviation 101: The Montreal Convention was published in the State Bar of Georgia – Aviation Law Section Newsletter. The Montreal Convention governs international travel and limits the liability of carriers in the “international carriage of persons, baggage or cargo.”
The Montreal Convention came into effect in the United States on November 4, 2003 and replaced the uniform system of liability for international air carriers previously established by the Warsaw Convention. Because the Montreal Convention only recently came into force, courts may rely on cases interpreting the Warsaw Convention where the provisions of the Montreal Convention are substantively the sameHis article discusses (a) when the Montreal Convention applies; (b) whether the Montreal Convention preempts state law claims; (c) who has standing; (d) the types of claims that are available, including bodily injury claims under Article 17, baggage claims under Article 17, cargo claims under Article 18, and delay claims under Article 19; and (e) whether the Montreal Convention can preempt a discrimination claim.
The Montreal Convention has a tremendous effect on the rights of carriers and passengers aboard international flights. Its provisions and the cases interpreting them must be carefully reviewed and considered whenever a potential claim is raised involving an international flight.