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Airline mis treatment/Unfair passport cancellation/baggage damages/str International Issue

Discussion in 'Immigration Issues' started by Noreen17, Jul 2, 2014.

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  1. Noreen17

    Noreen17 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I am writing on behalf of my parents who travelled to the USA from Kenya on May 27, 2014 and arrived in USA on May 28th 2014 for my graduation celebrations. They got their visas from Kenya and they could visit until November 2014 but they only wanted to stay for a month in the USA and go back to Kenya to take care of the other siblings. Their flight booking was through Expedia.com and the Airline was through Air France to Paris, then Atlanta to Chicago.

    The return journey after their 1 month visit was to start at Chicago on Tuesday the 24th June 2014 and Air France was operating.The flight was to depart at 525pm and head to Paris and to connect to Kenya and arrive on June 25th at 8pm. My parents checked in before 5pm and since my mom has Arthritis, HTN and also Diabetic, I had already booked a wheelchair due to the Arthritis. After I checked them in, we said our good byes and the wheelchair attendant took them to the elevators and I left for Fort Wayne, Indiana.

    On Wednesday June 25th i received an email from Expedia.com saying that I contact them regarding my parents flight which had had some changes. I contacted Expedia using their customer service numbers provided as 14047288787 and they informed me that my parents flight from Chicago on the 24 June 2014 had delayed and so their connection flight through Air France in Paris had been rescheduled and they gave me the contacts phone numbers as 18006672747 to call Air France. I called Air France immediately and they informed me of the delay that had impacted my parents flight not departing at the earlier scheduled time of 525pm. The flight had instead left past 7pm from Chicago heading to Paris. I enquired on when my parents were to leave France and they informed that they had booked them a connection flight from Paris at 235pm to arrive in Amsterdam at 350pm and have a layover time of 5h10min. They were to leave Amsterdam at 9pm and head to Nairobi arriving at 6:10am on the 26th June 2014. . I informed them of my mum's condition of being Diabetic and hoping that she was take her medications on time. The customer service lady assured me that my parents would be taken good care. Later on that day at 430 pm I called Air France to inquire on my parents flight status and they informed me that their earlier scheduled flight to Amsterdam had left them and that were to now to leave Paris at 10:55am and arrive in Nairobi at 8:00pm. I inquired further on what was happening in Paris that caused all the problem and the customer service on phone informed me that Air France in Paris was on strike and that’s why my parents were experiencing problems with their flight. They went on to say there was nothing they could do to find out if my parents were okay.

    My main aim of writing this or even seeking help is because my parents were not treated fairly in France. It all begun after they arrived there from USA and their initial flight had left them due to the Air France flight delay that left Chicago hours past their original departure time of 5:25pm on the June 24th. When they arrived in Paris at the airport and found the wheelchair attendant was waiting on them, they were assisted to the customer service and check in desk where they were informed of their flight having left them. The Air France attendant at the desk informed them that there was a scheduled flight to Kenya at that time and she issued them boarding passes and they were rushed to the security check. After which they were rushed to the gates only be told that the flight was full already and no space for them. The wheel chair attendant took them back to the Air France desk. The Air France help desk informed them that they would get them another flight to Kenya. They waited for an available flight from around 1pm Paris time to around 9pm when they were called to the desk and informed of a flight through Amsterdam and they were checked in and also given food tickets. They got all the required tickets/boarding passes to Amsterdam and they were ready to go. There was a wheelchair attendant ready for them and they were assisted to the gates where their nightmare kicked in. They went through the security checks and they were asked for their tickets for which they provided their Amsterdam tickets issued by Air france before boarding the plane. The security personnel looked at them and asked for their Schengen Visa to go to Amsterdam. My parents said they didn’t understand what it was and more so they could not understand French which was being used by the Security personnel police when talking to them. An interpreter was called who explained the Schengen visa was a transit visa and my dad explained of their situation and how the Air France had booked them the Amsterdam flight and made the arrangements so that they could connect to Kenya. The flight left without them and the Security personnel police asked the wheel chair attendant to take my parents to their offices where after long hours of waiting outside while other personnel were in the office and all my parents could hear them talk about was ‘visa’ as they spoke in French. A personnel police called my dad inside the office and he had some papers in his hands and asked my dad to sign. My dad refused to sign and said he didn’t know what the papers were talking about since they were written in French. An interpreter was called who said that the papers meant nothing alarming and they were just normal security protocol. She(interpreter) signed her part and my dad signed and then my mother signed hers too plus the security personnel police.

    After this ordeal, my parents were asked to surrender anything they had on them including money, my mother’s Blood Pressure and Blood Glucose Monitoring machines which were in her hand bag with her medications. My parents who now didn’t have any wheel chair attendant to assist them in any way, my dad assisted my mom and she went through the sharp stairs under the police following them and she could not walk well as her Arthritis are bad and she was all sweating and breathing so fast. They were directed to the reception on the ground floor which was quite a distance from their initial point. When they arrived at the directed place, my father explained to the police that my mother was not feeling well and they said they would take care of her. They were then directed to a car and taken to a Red Cross place where people are normally kept awaiting to be deported to their countries. My mother was then taken to a hospital and her Blood Pressure and Blood Glucose was checked on after a long wait and was given insulin to inject herself and later taken back to the Red Cross premises. They were informed of their room to sleep and informed that they were to be up and ready for breakfast at 730am in the morning June 26th and later they would be taken to the Airport for their flight.

    In the morning after 1000am they were driven to the Airport police who took them to their flight which they had been booked for a Kenya Airways. My father asked for their passports and luggage that had been taken from them earlier and it was explained to them that their belonging had been given to the flight Captain and he would give them when they arrived in Kenya. After their plane landed at the Jomo Kenyatta Airport at 8pm, my parents were the last to leave the plane as they had to get their belongings from the Captain. My father went and asked the Captain for their passports, money and my mother’s medical belonging and he told them to follow him. My parents followed him to the Immigration office and after their passports were stamped that’s when they were asked by the Immigration Officer in Kenya why they had been deported back home. Shockingly to them, they said they had no idea of what was happening and they explained all the details of their journey and how they had gone to USA for the graduation ceremonies of their daughter and their Visa from Kenya was still active. They explained of how Air France had delayed leaving Chicago and how they had been given connection boarding passes to Amsterdam by Air France personnel at Paris. The Air France had not mentioned anything about Schengen Visa to Amsterdam if it was needed in any way because they are the ones who were responsible for making such arrangements. The immigration officer showed them their passports which had been cancelled and denial entry to Amsterdam done on them and there was nothing the officer could do at that case. My parents left to look for their luggage very confused and two of their luggage were missing after looking for a long time. They filled some forms about their missing luggage and left for home.

    Later that morning on the 27th June 2014, they received a call from the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport(JKIA) assuring them that they were still checking for their missing luggage and would give them a call once found. On June 30th my father received a call from the JKIA informing them of their found luggage. My father went to the Airport and found the 2 bags but one of them had the zipper ripped apart and their clothes had been contained in a plastic bag. The bags had been taken to Amsterdam and had been re-route back to Kenya. My dad was asked to check if everything was okay and after checking for items that friends had given my parents to take to their loved ones and were present, he left. On reaching home after my mother checked on the clothes inside, some clothes were missing and now more agony to my parents.

    My mother’s health condition especially her feet are still swollen due to walking long distances at the Paris Airport after her wheel chair was taken away from her. Her blood pressure has been quite unstable and she is on medication.
    My question(s):
    1. Why didn’t the Air France take charge in ensuring that a flight was available for my parents at Paris after their flight in Chicago delayed to depart
    2. What will happen to my parents passports which were unfairly stamped and how to correct them through the Immigration department in France
    3. Who should pay for the unfair treatment of my parents like criminals who wanted to enter Amsterdam without the required documentation
    4. Air France was disorganized and didn’t care for my parents
    5. What about being lied to about the documentation they falsely forced to sign which later they learned they were deportation and denial entry cancellation on their passports
    6. What about my mum’s health
    7. What about their emotional, physical and psychological torture
    8. What about their luggage damaged bag and missing clothes
    NB. I have all documentations of this flight details. Hoping to get help of any kind to sue the Airline Air France or whoever responsible because it is very hurting to see someone’s parent not treated right and taken advantage of in any way. Thank you
     
  2. Proserpina

    Proserpina Moderator

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    I'm sorry, but this form is for US law.

    However I'll give a quick run down of what I'd expect the answers to be:

    1. It's not their problem that the Chicago plane was late; they can of course try to work with the situation but they're absolutely not obliged to do so.

    2. No idea. Check with the country who stamped it.

    3. Nobody. It happens - flights are delayed, connections are missed...paperwork gets mixed up. This is simply an example of international travel.

    4. They don't have to

    5. I would think that would be impossible to prove and the blame would lie with your parents.

    6. Sorry, but it happens. If she needs specific or specialized care she's free to pay for a nurse to accompany her.

    7. See previous answer

    8. That happens.

    The only thing I can suggest is that you speak to the airlines to see if any money can be recouped.

    Otherwise, I'm sorry but this just part and parcel of international travel. You may want to ensure a translator and/or nurse is present if they travel again
     

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