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New horizons

Rules harmonising cross-border claims have been in place for decades, but there are still uncertainties about their scope and application. Jenny Ramage reports

16 March 2010

Since their introduction 18 years ago, the Package Travel Regulations 1992 have generated endless controversy over their actual scope. Now the directive on which they are based is finally being reviewed by the European Commission, with formal proposals for reform expected later this year.

The general direction taken by the commission would expand the protection given to consumers by the directive – something which claimant lawyers have welcomed.

“We are very pleased about this, because there are areas where the directive has really fallen behind in terms of protection,” says Clive Garner, head of Irwin Mitchell’s international travel litigation group and chair of the Tourism Group of the Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers (PEOPIL) In particular, according to Garner, the directive is out of sync with the trend toward ‘dynamic packaging’, where people tailor their holiday themselves; for example, booking their flights and accommodation sep...

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