Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares (R) today sent a bipartisan joint letter with the attorneys general of 37 states to Congressional leaders urging them to take meaningful action and pass legislation that would authorize state attorneys general to enforce both state and federal consumer protection laws governing the airline industry.
Over the past two years, thousands of complaints nationwide have been made against airline customer service from airline passengers, including complaints about systematic failures to distribute required credits to passengers who were unable to fulfill pre-established travel opportunities during the pandemic.
“Flying is essential to millions of Virginians and helps support both our state and national economies, which means that consumer confidence in the air travel experience has significant economic impact. For years, the federal government has failed to spur the U.S. Department of Transportation to effectively and efficiently respond to consumer complaints and state attorneys general have little to no authority to hold airline companies accountable when they break the law and abuse consumers. Congress must discuss possible legislation that provides more consistent and fair enforcement mechanisms for consumer violations to protect Virginians that are heavily reliant on the airline industry for personal and professional travel,” said Attorney General Miyares.
The letter also encourages Congress to consider shifting the oversight authority for federal investigations of patron complaints concerning airlines from the U.S. Department of Transportation to an agency more primarily focused on consumer protection, such as the Department of Justice or the Federal Trade Commission.
Attorney General Miyares joins the attorneys general of the following states in sending the joint letter: Arizona, Colorado, Alaska, California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.