ON YOUR SIDE: Lost luggage liability

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - If you plan to fly, it's a good idea to get familiar with the fine print on your ticket, just in case your luggage is lost.

A local woman called 12 for help getting reimbursed for a claim that had already been settled.

Kelly Ross stared at the baggage carousel a long time, looking for her brightly-marked luggage. It never showed up on the spinning conveyor belt.

"It's just a bag to them. It's just a bag they lost. To them, it's just stuff. To me, it's my life," said Kelly.

The contents Kelly values at $5,000. Her clothes, other items, and numerous electronics all listed on the claim form, with receipts she filed with American Airlines.

"A brand-new Apple iPad. I just bought my computer. My brand new Air Mac. My camera I had bought two days prior to leaving on the trip."

Kelly had one too many carry on bags on her return flight from Colorado, back in July. American Airlines instructed her to check one - a bag full of electronics, or her mom's medications.

"'You made me choose between medication and a bag that I didn't want to check. I was forced to check this bag,' I argued in Denver."

American Airlines said it conducted an exhaustive search and that 99.6 percent of all checked bags arrive when they should, where they should. It apologized to Kelly in a letter, months before we got involved, and later sent her a check for the lost property. Kelly wasn't happy with the cash settlement and sent the check back to American.

"Send me the $3,300 that's listed on the inside of your ticket stub. It's right here in blue writing. Personal compensation if my bag's lost," she pleaded.

$3,300 is the max for the airline's liability... but when she kept reading she found other clauses. "Carrier assumes no liability for electronic equipment, jewelry, cash, art or other valuables."

American says the majority of the items were excluded from liability. Kelly has nothing.

"I'm going to be watching TV one night. There's going to be my bag being auctioned off on TV, is what I'm going to see," she fears.

She hopes the airline will reissue the $1,600 check it sent for some of her property.

Matt Miller with American Airlines says they will issue a new check, but the dollar amount will not change.The airline tells us it's being re-issued today. Kelly should have it in the next week or two.

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