Thousands of holidaymakers could lose right to compensation

50
3
Thousands of holidaymakers could lose right to compensation

Passengers taking bus and coach trips to the continent would lose their right to compensation for delays in Dover under government plans to delete thousands of EU laws.

Legislation specifically designed to offer redress for those on trips of longer than 250 km 155 miles has been removed from a government list of more than 3,700 laws that risk being scrapped or changed under the controversial EU law bill.

Under a sunset clause which will sweep away all EU laws at the end of December, compensation rights would be Automatically deleted from British statute books, excluding those actively saved by parliament.

Who is Rocio Concha, the director of policy and advocacy at Which? The consumer group said it is clear that the government does not currently have a firm enough grip on the extent of legislation which is at risk of simply slipping off the statute books by mistake.

If the disruption we witnessed at the Port of Dover would happen during the Easter holidays next year, thousands of passengers rights, including eligibility for compensation in the event of delays or cancellations, would all but evaporate. Bus passengers are eligible for snacks and meals if there is a 90-minute delay on any journey longer than three hours.

If a stay of one or more nights becomes necessary, accommodation, and transport to and from that accommodation must be offered, with particular effort required to meet the needs of passengers with disabilities and any companion passenger.

Thousands of holidaymakers, many of them children on school trips, were hit by delays in Dover of up to 18 hours at Easter, under current laws could claim compensation.

The delays were a result of a combination of bad weather and a post-Brexit obligation for French border police to make time-consuming checks of passports stamps to ensure non-EU citizens, including British, comply with new limits on visitor stays on the continent.

By the end of the 2023, the government will abolish retained EU legislation, including laws that have been actively saved by ministers in parliament.

It has been under fire from lawyers, the opposition and peers not only because of the ambitious plans to review almost 4,000 laws but also because of the sweeping powers to remove layers of parliamentary scrutiny, necessary if it is to achieve the goal.

A group of Labour, Tory, Liberal Democrats and crossbench peers is meeting in secret for weeks to discuss how to amendment the bill.

The first government dashboard of 2,400 laws that would be affected by the REUL was updated this year after the discovery of 1,400 laws that were not on the original list.

The Department for Transport said it continues to identify REUL in scope of the bill and expect this list to continue to iterate.