Boundary Fares – Justin Gutmann Wins in Court of Appeal
In October 2021, the Boundary Fares case was certified by the Competition Appeal Tribunal. However, the defendants appealed this decision and the case was heard by the Court of Appeal. The Court of Appeal has decided in favour of train users and rejected the Train Operating Companies appeals. The case will now proceed.
There was good news today for our client, Mr Gutmann, and all train users, from the Court of Appeal who dismissed the appeal against certification made by the Southeastern and Southwestern train operating companies. We are hopeful the defendants will not try and appeal this decision any further and that the case will now proceed to a full trial to assess liability and damages.
The case has been brought against the companies for failing to make “boundary” fares readily available to Travelcard holders and failing to make passengers aware of their existence. This has resulted in millions of train users having to pay twice for the part of their journey covered by their Travelcard. The claims aim to put a stop to this double charging and are estimated to be worth around £93 million in damages to millions of passengers who have travelled in and around London.
Charles Lyndon is representing Mr Gutmann, an experienced campaigner on both consumer issues and the transport sector, along with its co-counsel Hausfeld LLP. The cases will now proceed to a full trial where we will argue for compensation for the millions of rail users who have been affected by the double charging.
The news through from the Court of Appeal today follows a two-day hearing in June 2022. The Court of Appeal upheld the Competition Appeal Tribunal’s decision to approve Mr Gutmann’s applications for collective proceeding orders, granting him permission to act as a class representative to all those deemed affected.
An important step forward for rail passengers, and consumers in general.
“We hope that the defendants now accept the decision of the Court of Appeal and that all parties proceed with this claim without further delay. Charles Lyndon and Mr Gutmann are dedicated to bringing compensation for the millions of affected rail users and look forward to taking the claim forward. The wider ramifications for consumers in general should not be understated. The Court of Appeal confirmed that liability can be determined on an aggregate basis; and abuse of a dominant position can include price and non-price abuses and competition law can be used to address a ‘wide range of consumer harms’”
Rodger Burnett, Director of Charles Lyndon
Boundary Fares – Next Steps
The cases will now proceed to a full trial where we will argue for compensation for the millions of rail users who have been affected by the double charging.
This is an opt-out claim which means that class members who live in the UK will be automatically included in the claim although they can choose to opt-out in due course.
We will continue to keep you updated along each step of this landmark trial here and via our social media channels.
We would like to thank: Our Class Representative, Justin Gutmann; Our Counsel team: Philip Moser QC, Stefan Kuppen, and Alex Littlewood (all Monckton Chambers); Our Economists: Derek Holt and Ben Forbes (AlixPartners); and our Co-Counsel: Hausfeld & Co LLP.