Israeli flag-carrier El Al, and other operators, have fended off a legal claim for damages over a security levy collected by the airlines as part of their fares.

Two class-action claims filed with the central district court – one against El Al and a second against several Israeli airlines – had emerged in early 2018, and were subsequently consolidated.

El Al says they centred on various allegations of “illegal collection” of the security levy, with the applicants estimating the extent of damage at 612 million shekels ($161 million).

But the airline states that a 31 August judgement has rejected the claim, ruling that the security levy is “not a tax or a fee”.

“It is a component of the price of the flight, and no limitations are imposed on its collection,” says El Al.

El Al adds that the applicants have been ordered to pay the company’s expenses in relation to the legal claim.

Israir Group had been subject to a similar claim amounting to 54 million shekels. The leisure operator states that it has also been awarded costs after the court’s rejection.

El Al fleet-c-El Al

Source: El Al