AMR Corp., the parent company of American Airlines, and US Airways have filed a motion to start their trail over anti-trust matters on November 12.
On August 13, the Department of Justice, backed by the attorneys general of six states and the District of Columbia, announced its intention to file a lawsuit against the carriers to stop an $11 billion merger, which would create a combined carrier under the American flag. The European Union, which also had to give its approval of the merger, approved the deal with a few concessions earlier in the month.
Justice had requested that the trial start in 180 days. Carrier officials said that time frame is much too long since American is still in bankruptcy proceedings and time is of the essence. They also pointed out that the average time Justice takes between its initial complaint and the start of a trial is 70 days.
“We are eager to show that the DOJ’s action would deny millions of customers access to a more competitive airline that will offer customers what they want, delivering significant benefits to consumers, communities and employees,” US Airways Chairman Doug Parker said in a statement.
Unions for both carriers, industry groups and quasi-governmental agencies have all spoken out in favor of the deal. Recently, the presidents of the Dallas Regional Chamber and the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce wrote a letter to the Texas’ attorney general, who sided with Justice's stance on the issue, expressing approval of the deal. American Airlines has its biggest hub at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, and they reasoned that the carrier’s health is tied to economic growth for the region.
“If this merger is not finalized, there is no 'Plan B' for American Airlines. Failing to allow American Airlines to merge with US Airways will result in further bankruptcy proceedings that will stretch for an extended period of time,” they wrote in the letter. “In addition, service and employees will suffer, causing financial dislocations around DFW International Airport, one of the world’s busiest and a critical hub of global business in Texas.” - Jon Ross