The UK Court of Appeal has found that Emirates (EK, Dubai International) is liable to pay compensation to passengers in line with EU regulations for flight delays. Emirates had argued that it was not covered by the legislation, as a non-EU carrier, however, the court has found that non-EU airlines must comply with the rules for flights which originate in an EU country.

Under European regulations, passengers which depart any EU airport are entitled to compensation if their arrival at their final destination is delayed by more than three hours, including connecting flights.

The UK's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) brought action against five airlines earlier this year – which also included American Airlines (AA, Dallas/Fort Worth), Etihad Airways (EY, Abu Dhabi International), Singapore Airlines (SQ, Singapore Changi), Turkish Airlines (TK, Istanbul Airport) – for failing to provide passengers with the means of claiming up to EUR600 (USD700) in compensation for delayed flights.

Emirates contended that flights from the UK with a stopover in Dubai should not be included, but the Court's ruling has found that missed connections outside Europe still fall under the regulation.

"The CAA has written to Emirates and asked the airline to be good to its word and accept the Court of Appeal judgment," a CAA statement says.

In regard to the other airlines, the CAA says that Turkish Airlines is now compensating passengers. The CAA has also advised the other airlines about the ruling against Emirates.