Door held open for MH370 lawsuits

Malaysia Airlines Berhad's attempt to have a lawsuit brought by relatives of passengers aboard doomed flight MH370 thrown out has failed, keeping the door open for other claims to follow.

Markus Mainka

The Malaysian court ruling against Malaysian Airlines Berhad's (MAB) bid to have the lawsuit thrown out will likely come as a relief to many relatives and loved ones of those 239 people who disappeared aboard the flight. It was feared by many that next of kin would not be able to secure compensation from Malaysia Airline Systems (MAS), after the now defunct company transferred all of its assets to MAB in a restructuring exercise undertaken last year.

The flagship claim in question was brought by two teenagers whose parents and older brother were passengers on the lost Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. The court dismissed MAB's stance that it carried no liability for the accident as it was set up a full eight months after the plane disappeared en route to Beijing on March 8, 2014.

'It is not plainly obvious that MAB is not a proper party (to the suit). That should only be determined by a full trial,' the court ruled.

The claim will now proceed to be the first compensation case to be heard in Malaysia in relation to the aviation disaster. More than 50 suits relating to the aircraft's disappearance have been filed so far in Malaysia, along with claims filed in Australia, China and the United States.

Sources: Asian Legal Business; International Business Times

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