Update (and SHOCKER): The TSA is, at long last, paying me for my bag they destroyed (from my May’17 flight)!

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I am simply stunned. Most folks told me that I would never, ever, see a dime from the TSA after they destroyed my bag. Some readers said that if it has been over 6 months my claim is likely lost or just turned down or something along those lines. I was starting to believe them.

To bring you up to speed, if you are new to the blog, on my way to Sweden this past May the TSA sliced my bag. I use zip ties to keep the zippers together since when I have used TSA approved locks in the past they tend to disappear and, despite how cheap they are, I got tired of replacing them. Now understand I do not zip tie them tight so they can be simply snipped off. Most times this works just fine and the TSA even tends to put a new zip tie on when they are done inspecting whatever it was they wanted to look at.

Then on my May trip, in South Bend, an agent came up to me at the gate and said they had cut the bag, they were sorry, and here is how you file a claim. We mailed off the form at the end of May upon our return to the USA. We did receive a letter acknowledging the claim on July 26th of 2017 and then silence since then. That is until this week when we got the letter you see above.

It also included a second form that had to be filled out and mailed or faxed in to get payment because the default, if you do nothing, is that you are “saying” you do not want the payment you requested! Really TSA? But I guess I understand they need you to acknowledge that it settles the claim.

Anyway, yes the bag was cheap, as you can tell from the total requested. But in the end I am pleased to see that the TSA did in fact step up and at long last, 7 months later, agree to pay me for the damage. Now the next interesting bit will be just how long it takes for them to send me a check. What is your guess? Will it take till May of 2018 until I see a check in the mail? – René

UPDATE: The check is here (that was fast).


  1. Payment usually takes about 60 days using direct deposit. TSA broke my Apple Watch a while back at a TSA checkpoint and it took about 9 months for total resolution and payment.

  2. Thank you for taking the time to post (and deal with the bureaucracy). It’s helpful to know how to do this and that it really can be resolved (assuming you get the check).

    There are so many examples of how passengers are the David to a system of Goliaths.

  3. Congratulations for your successful resolution. Truth be told I had hoped TSA would drop the ball you’d take your case before Judge Judy. We all would have had a laugh as she slapped a knot on the head of some TSA Agent.

  4. I went through the same thing when I visited Vegas in April. My laptop was broken. On 12/26/17 I got a letter that I was approved for 589.00. Long overdue I might say. I was thinking I was going to be denied. I opted for direct deposit thinking that would be faster. How long did it take for your check to arrive?

  5. @A Williams – Just a few weeks for the check to arrive. Mailed in the form. I would have done direct deposit but I wanted a check to post on the blog so… 😉

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