This article discusses Article 22 of the Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air (“The Montreal Convention”) and its impact on the transportation of human remains. The Convention limits carrier liability to a sum of 19 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) per kilogram in the case of destruction, loss, damage or delay of part of the cargo or of any object contained therein. Transportation of human remains falls under Article 22 which forecloses any recovery for pain and suffering unaccompanied by physical injury. This Article finds fault with this liability limit. The Article notes that if a plaintiff were to bring a claim against a carrier for mishandling of human remains, recovery will be limited to the weight of the corpse and the casket in kilograms, multiplied by 19 SDRs. This leads to the absurd result of recovering more for a heavy corpse and/or casket versus a light one. The Article argues that by classifying human remains as ordinary cargo thus applying ordinary cargo rules, The Montreal Convention as generally applied is inhuman and absurd.
Death Be Not Strange. The Montreal Convention’s Mislabeling of Human Remains as Cargo and Its Near Unbreakable Liability Limits,
Dick. L. Rev.
Available at: https://ideas.dickinsonlaw.psu.edu/dlr/vol124/iss1/3
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