Rising Stars

Aviation in Canada

Bennett Jones LLP

Bennett Jones LLP houses a strong practice that is well-versed in corporate financing, aircraft financing, leasing, acquisition, debt restructuring, compliance issues, litigation and regulatory matters. The group is routinely instructed by major airlines, aircraft operators and aircraft manufacturers for advice on purchase and sale agreements with manufacturers and for used aircraft. Aircraft leasing companies and financiers seek out the team for assistance with lease structures, aircraft purchase, lease novations, aircraft financing and aircraft security issues. The team also demonstrates adept handling of contentious matters, and has experience representing clients in litigation relating to maintenance standards and aircraft crashes. Calgary-based Patrick Brennan steers the practice and focuses on aircraft acquisition, dispositions and financings. Also stationed in Calgary, key partner Noriko Shimura majors on aircraft leasing and financing transactions.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Brennan K.C.

Other key lawyers:

Noriko Shimura

Key clients

Flair Airlines

ATB Financial

Canadian Aviation Infrastructure Consortia

Calgary Fuel Facilities

Edmonton Fuel Facilities

Halifax International Fuel Facilities

International De-icing Facilities

Hamilton Airport Fuel Facilities

Kelowna Glycol Facilities

Montreal International Fuel Facilities

Ottawa International Fuel Facilities

International De-icing Facilities

Pearson International Fuel Facilities

St. John’s Fuel Facilities

Vancouver Airport Fuel Facilities

Winnipeg International Fuel Facilities

Chorus Aviation

Cygnet Aviation Academy

Chorus Aviation Capital (Ireland)

General Bank of Canada

Jazz Aviation

Voyageur Aviation

Longview Aviation Capital

Shock Trauma Air Rescue Service (STARS)

Eagle Copters

Viking Air

de Havilland Aircraft of Canada

Work highlights

  • Advised Flair on all of its aircraft lease negotiations, including the 2022 fleet expansion with the leasing and delivery of Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft.
  • Counsel to Chorus in connection with the first amendment and restatement, as well as the second amendment and restatement of Chorus’s existing credit facility with The Bank of Nova Scotia as administrative agent.
  • Counsel to a purchaser of a vintage aircraft who is commencing an action against an aircraft broker and aircraft maintenance company for falsely representing the safety and mechanical conditions of the aircraft prior during pre-purchase negotiations and inspection.

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP

Strategic aviation finance and regulatory advice are core strengths of the group at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. The team is regularly instructed by aviation multinational corporations, manufacturers, financiers and lessors, and is well-versed in both aircraft and engine financings, aerospace M&A, airport and infrastructure financing and satellite financing. The group also boasts substantial knowledge on the federal government’s National Airports Policy. Toronto-based Jason MacIntyre steers the practice and offers significant expertise in aircraft repossessions, airline and aircraft maintenance licensing and certification, foreign investment in Canadian airlines and airport privatization. Auriol Marasco is highly active on aircraft financing and regulatory matters. Partner Donald Gray retired in December 2022. Eric Goneau focuses primarily on secured lending and structured finance transactions and is a key associate-level contact.

Practice head(s):

Jason MacIntyre

Other key lawyers:

Auriol Marasco; Eric Goneau

Key clients


Aergo Capital

Azorra Aviation Holdings

BOC Aviation

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce


Export-Import Bank of the United States

Jackson Square Aviation

PNC Bank Aviation Finance

The Boeing Company


Work highlights

  • Advised Azorra Aviation Holdings on the pre-delivery payment financing and sale-leaseback of 5xE195-E2 aircraft to Porter Airlines.
  • Advised Aviation Working Group on the preparation of the AWG’s Cross Border Transferability (XBT) Handbook.
  • Advised a drones delivery operator on aviation regulatory matters concerning foreign investment.


The team at Dentons is well-versed in aviation issues, namely complex and structured financing transactions and compliance mandates. International aviation financiers, commercial and business aircraft lessors, aircraft chartered companies, airports and private operators routinely feature on its broad client roster. Vancouver-based practice co-head Robert Quon specializes in assisting aviation and aerospace clients with corporate and commercial transactions. Alongside him, Kathryn McCulloch co-leads from Toronto and has niche expertise in the regulatory structure for drones; her robust traditional aviation practice includes representing commercial air operators in litigation. In Montreal, partner Marie-Josée Couture assists with financing transactions.

Practice head(s):

Robert Quon; Kathryn McCulloch

Other key lawyers:

Marie-Josée Couture

DLA Piper (Canada) LLP

DLA Piper (Canada) LLP‘s aviation expertise encompasses the acquisition, leasing and financing of aviation equipment and flight simulators, as well as governmental compliance and regulatory matters. Aviation insurance claims, domestic and international baggage loss claims and the defence of air carriers in passenger injury and wrongful death claims are additional specialities. The group also boasts substantial knowledge of international and bilateral air treaties and conventions that govern international air transport. Toronto-based practice co-head Catherine Pawluch routinely represents clients before aviation regulatory authorities, including the Canadian Transportation Agency. Alongside her, Laura Safran KC co-leads from Calgary and is noted for her expertise in aircraft acquisitions and financings, regulatory matters and aviation claims work. Also in Calgary, associate Prasad Taksal supports on commercial, transactional and regulatory matters. Partner Andrew McFarlane left the practice in March 2023.

Practice head(s):

Catherine Pawluch; Laura Safran KC

Other key lawyers:

Prasad Taksal


‘The team includes experienced individuals in different aspects of aviation.’

‘Every individual in the team has made themselves available to us in urgent situations and at anytime we asked for help.’

Key clients

Air Canada

Cargolux International Airlines, Cargolux



Canadian Helicopter Corps



Japan Airlines


Work highlights

  • Assisted Hi Fly and SpringJet in complying with the necessary Canadian regulatory requirements and obtaining the necessary aviation permits and authorizations for each individual flight required to transport Afghan, Ukrainian and other immigrants to Canada.
  • Assisted Airble Aviation with preparing all necessary documentation, as well as advising on all applicable aviation regulatory matters, for its operation in the US market.

Stikeman Elliott LLP

Stikeman Elliott LLP's group is regularly instructed by aviation industry players seeking support with aircraft and equipment finance, and leasing, transactional, regulatory compliance and litigation matters. Domestic and cross-border aviation and aerospace commercial disputes, particularly those involving allegations of nonconformity with contractual specifications or product defects, are a key area of expertise for the department. The practice is co-led by Montreal-based partners Pierre-Paul Daunais and Serge Levy. Daunais is noted for his litigation expertise, which is centred on representing aviation companies, while Levy focuses on sophisticated debt financing transactions, including cross-border leveraged finance transactions.

Practice head(s):

Pierre-Paul Daunais; Serge Levy

Key clients

Airbus Canada Limited Partnership

Bombardier Aerospace

Aircraft Terminal Services

Air Canada

United States Aviation Underwriters

Airwest Leasing II

Gowling WLG

The aviation expertise of the group at Gowling WLG encompasses customer and supply agreements, advertising and marketing affairs, joint bids and bid protests, procurement and lease agreements, financing and multi-jurisdictional litigation. Project development and finance specialist Thomas Timmins steers the practice. Key partners include Ottawa-based Cynthia Elderkin, whose focus is on transactions involving the regulation, leasing, sale and purchase of commercial, business and personal aircraft; and Montreal-based David Kierans, who handles secured lending and aviation finance.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Timmins

Other key lawyers:

Cynthia Elderkin; David Kierans

Key clients

Pipestone Energy

Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB)

Detail K2

Bank of Montreal (BMO)

Bank of Ireland

Work highlights

  • Defended United Airlines in a competition law class action.