Families mull lawsuits over missing plane

Updated: 2014-03-28 02:53

By JIN HAIXING and WANG WEN (China Daily)

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A Thai satellite has located about 300 objects floating in the ocean, and Tokyo also said a Japanese satellite has spotted suspicious objects possibly related to the missing plane. However, none of the objects has been found or confirmed to be debris from the plane.

Zhang said that under normal circumstances the families could file a lawsuit after conclusions are made about a crash. But as the circumstances surrounding flight MH370 are so special and as Malaysia has announced that the plane crashed, the families can turn to the courts now.

Defendants could include the airline, aircraft builder and engine manufacturers. Families mull lawsuits over missing plane

The families can choose different countries in which to file suits, such as the destination of the flight, the airline’s home country and that of the aircraft manufacturer, said Zhang, indicating China, the US, Malaysia and possibly Australia, if the aircraft is found in its territory.

He said the amount of compensation varies from country to country.

Generally speaking, the US has the highest compensation payment, at about $5 million per passenger, while the figure in China is between 1.2 million ($193,000) and 1.5 million yuan. In Malaysia, it is between $300,000 and $500,000, he said.

But lawsuit costs in different countries also vary, Zhang said.

Liu Weimin, director of the Civil Aviation Management Institution of China’s Aviation Law Research Center, said the families can ask for more if the airline was responsible for a crash.

Contact the writers at jinhaixing@chinadaily.com.cn and wangwen@chinadaily.com.cn.

Reuters contributed to this story.


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