News

Cruise line claims keep rising

The total value of claims resulting from the cancellation of Classic International Cruises’ Australian season could top $5 million, according to the latest projections.

A creditors meeting, held yesterday, saw CIC Australia and its administrators, Lawler Partners, update around 250 creditors, mostly travel agents, on the administration of the troubled cruise line.

However, administrator Brad Tonks told Travel Today there was a possibility passengers may also end up as creditors in the administration.

“In the first instance, we recommend that passengers talk with the Travel Compensation Fund (TCF) about what sort of claim they might be able to lodge,” he said. “I think that is the most likely and fastest way that passengers are likely to receive some compensation for any monies that they’ve previously forwarded.”

However, if passengers are not covered by the TCF, by travel insurance or by credit card chargebacks, it may well be their “fall back position” to become a creditor of the administration, he said.

While initial estimates predicted claims would hit around $2 million, Tonks said current projections were in the order of $5 million or more.

“There’s a lot of work to be done to confirm those preliminary figures,” he said. “I predict that those figures will move subject to better particulars becoming available to us over the coming weeks.”

Tonks confirmed “significant funds” of around $3.1 million are held in the accounts of the company’s local operation. Lawler and Partners is currently seeking legal advice as to the proper course of distributing the funds.

Another creditors meeting will be held in around one month, when the firm will present a detailed report to all creditors about the company affairs and what courses of action or future Classic International Cruises may have.


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