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Andreas Lubitz, the pilot of Germanwings Flight 9525 was hiding an illness. What kind of illness it was has not been made public. Company policy requires they be notified of medical conditions such as mental illness that could affect flying or a pilot’s license.
As the co-pilot deliberately locked out the pilot, and crashed the plane after diverting autopilot’s path to crash into the French Alps, France is considering charging Lufthansa with manslaughter of the 150 aboard. If found guilty, that would mean compensation additional to what Allianz and other co-insurers are estimating the cost of Germanwings Flight 9525 could be. It could top a billion even without criminal charges..
(In the U.S., it would have amounted to as much as three times that.)
It will take over a year to settle, and the amount of payment to each family will be contingent on each country’s laws, as well as the Montreal Treaty. James Healy-Pratt (London’s Stewarts Law LLP) said between Germany, the US and France, German law has the lowest compensation rate.
Compensation amounts are figured by a specific formula and contingent on age and employment as well as country. An unemployed victim’s family could receive less than $100,000 as opposed to that of a high-income provider who could get over a million.
Watch this great explanation below of implementation of aviation compensation law based on what is known as the Montreal Treaty. The airline has to prove it did nothing wrong.
General Motors has set aside an initial $400 million to cover its costs of compensation. Claims of ignition-switch defects in its cars total 4,312. Fifty-six deaths, and 87 injuries are eligible for compensation. A number of other death, catastrophic injury and less-serious injury incidents were not considered eligible. The deadline was Jan. 31.
The airline began distributing 1.2 million Taiwan dollars ($38,000) to families for funeral costs. Probably any such compensation will be subtracted from the amount awarded by the courts.
Later in the week, more airline reps plan to meet with families to talk about compensation.