CTA launches consultation on new refund requirements
December 21, 2020 – Gatineau, QC – Canadian Transportation Agency
The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) launched today a consultation seeking input from members of the public, consumer organizations, airlines and experts on a proposed regulation establishing additional refund obligations for airlines.
On December 18, 2020, the Minister of Transport sent a letter to the CTA's Chair and CEO stating his intention to provide the CTA with the authority to develop new regulatory requirements for airlines to provide passengers with refunds when flights are cancelled, or there is a lengthy delay, for reasons outside airlines’ control and it is not possible to complete the passengers’ itinerary within a reasonable time.
The CTA can only develop regulations if given the appropriate authority by Parliament in legislation or by the Minister of Transport through a formal direction.
After reviewing all feedback from the public, consumer organizations, airlines and experts, the CTA will develop the regulation, with the goal of having them in place by summer 2021.
“The CTA welcomes the action by the Minister of Transport to give it the legal authority to establish a new obligation for airlines to issue refunds when flights are cancelled or significantly delayed for reasons outside their control, and it isn’t possible for the airline to complete the passenger's itinerary within a reasonable time. The CTA will move quickly to consult Canadians, consumer groups, and industry on the specifics of the new regulatory provisions, and work to bring them into force by the summer. Until these requirements are in effect, airlines are encouraged to adopt policies that ensure no passenger is left out of pocket for the value of a cancelled flight, irrespective of the fare purchased or the reason for the cancellation.”
About the CTA
The Canadian Transportation Agency is an independent, quasi-judicial tribunal and regulator that has, with respect to all matters necessary for the exercise of its jurisdiction, all the powers of a superior court. The CTA has three core mandates: helping to keep the national transportation system running efficiently and smoothly, protecting the fundamental right of persons with disabilities to accessible transportation services, and providing consumer protection for air passengers. To help advance these mandates, the CTA makes and enforces ground rules that establish the rights and responsibilities of transportation service providers and users and level the playing field among competitors, resolves disputes using a range of tools from facilitation and mediation to arbitration and adjudication, and ensures that transportation service providers and users are aware of their rights and responsibilities and how the CTA can help them.