Compensation Clinic: American Airlines Retro Claim


This week the Compensation Clinic comes from my case with American Airlines and its inability to process a retro claim without having to take them to the small claims court.

Compensation Clinic American Airlines Retro Claim

Remember that you can always email me, send me a Facebook message or Tweet me about the issues you have with hotels, airlines and other travel providers. I will feature one new case each week.

Here’s what happened:

I couldn’t decide at the time of taking some LAN flights whether I should credit them to American Airlines AAdvantage program or to British Airways Executive Club. Later, I decided that the best course of action is probably credit them to AA and did the following.

1. Filed Retro Claim

Filed a retro claim on for a this ticket that was issued on AA’s ticket stock. I never heard anything from American Airlines.

2. Sent Boarding Passes By Registered Mail

Sent the boarding passes to AA’s address in Dallas by registered mail and nothing happened.

3. Filed Complaint With DOT

American Airlines reply had nothing to do with the retro claim. Whoever replied to DOT was not on the ball.

4. Filed Small Claims Case

American Airlines claimed that I hadn’t followed the retro claim process or mailed in the boarding passes. Their lawyer basically lied to the court in their reply. American Airlines now, however, processed the retro claim and posted the miles to my account. They also offered $200 American Airlines transportation voucher for my costs that I declined.


I have never been impressed with American Airlines Customer Relations. You would think that you are dealing with the IRS rather than a business that is dependent of customers that can pick and choose the airline that they fly.

American Airlines had three opportunities here to post the miles for these three LAN flights that I had taken but they failed at every step.

I guess that it is “cheaper” for AA to pay couple of thousands for a lawyer to handle each small claims case rather than getting their processes right and hire customer relations employees with basic reading comprehension skills.