What are class-actions? And why they can be a good idea

When you travel as much as we do, you soon realize that all sorts of things can go wrong. Most trips go very well. But, every now and again, they don’t.
Fortunately, for us, most of the time, they have been relatively small things that we have been able to remedy quickly. But, that has not always been the case for our friends and family. We have heard our fair share of horror stories. Flight cancellations, accommodation not ready, trips and falls, tummy bugs because of the food and much more besides.

It happens, and when things go really wrong and your travel insurance does not fully cover you the only effective alternative is likely to be getting involved in a class action. Yet, despite this, relatively few people seem to know that they can use this course of action to get the compensation they deserve after experiencing a disaster, while on holiday. So, today, I am going to tell you a bit about them. What they are, how they can benefit you and how to get involved.

What is a class-action?

According to Lexico, a class action is “A lawsuit filed or defended by an
individual or small group acting on behalf of a large group.” Which is actually a very good way of putting it, but the ins and outs of class-actions are easier to understand when you look at a specific example.

Let’s say you go to a hotel and most of the guests go down with food poisoning including you. The only thing you all have in common is that you all ate virtually all of your food in the hotel. So, it is extremely likely that your bad stomachs are down to that fact. You’ve spent 3 days in your room recovering so a significant part of your holiday has been ruined, as has that of many other guests. Plus, you all now have medical bills to pay.

In that situation, most of you will be entitled to compensation. But, the hotel won’t play ball and your travel insurance does not provide full coverage for this eventuality. What do you do? Well, you could take out a class-action. As many of you as possible, could set up a social media account, find a lawyer to take you all on as a group and pursue your case.

Why class-actions are so effective

Working as a group is far more effective than each of you filing an individual claim. You can pool your evidence and if a big group of you share the same facts, your version of events is far more likely to convince a judge. Even the biggest firms find it hard to win class actions.

How to find one

Hopefully, when something goes wrong one of the community-spirited guests that are affected will suggest that everyone consider a class-action. Setting up a social media page and sharing the details is not hard to do. So, increasingly people who are affected when things go wrong during their holidays are clubbing together to take legal action.

But, most of the time, you will have to search the web to see if you can find a class-action that deals with your problem. There are websites that help you to do this. Many of the best ones also provide you with a way to start the ball rolling yourself.

This is a collaborative post.



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