Elmar Giemulla, the lawyer representing 39 families whose loved ones died in the Germanwings plane crash is weighing the possibility of taking his lawsuit to the United States. The advantage to moving the lawsuit to the US is American law allows for much larger settlements than in Germany.
Prosecutors who have investigated the March crash of the A320 Airbus have come to the conclusion that the co-pilot intentionally crashed the plane, killing all 150 people on board. The plane was flying from Barcelona to Duesseldorf.
Two of the victims were American citizens, and the co-pilot did some of his training in the United States. These facts, according to Giemulla, will allow him to bring his lawsuit to the US. The advantage to suing in the US is that much more money can be collected, for instance, the deceased future earnings and the emotional damage done by the event can be calculated into the settlement. In Germany, where more than half of the victims had citizenship, does not allow those calculations.
Lufthansa, which owns Germanwings, has already offered the victims’ families about $108,000 per family, depending on the size of the family. Giemulla says that offer is way too low. He does say that he will discuss the issue again with Lufthansa before he files any lawsuit.