With capabilities advising on the full range of aviation work including regulatory, finance, dispute resolution and corporate matters, Clyde & Co LLP has also carved out a reputation as a specialist practice for insured liability claims on behalf of airlines. Other contentious work undertaken by the department covers major losses and passenger claims in the context of both litigation and arbitration. The firm's network of offices provides its diverse client base with global coverage, while in Paris the team chiefly represents airlines, insurers and aeroclubs. Recently promoted to the partnership, Grégory Laville de la Plaigne jointly leads the group alongside Maylis Casati-Ollier and Fabrice Pradon, both of whom specialise in contentious aviation work.
Aviation in France
Clyde & Co LLP
‘Multidisciplinary team whose strong knowledge of the sector allows it to give first-rate legal advice. Professional and available.‘
‘The strengths of this practice is its analysis, communication, and professionalism in the course of its work.‘
‘We hold Gregory Laville de la Plaigne in the highest esteem.‘
‘Always available and reactive, very flexible and adapt easily to client needs. Great international network.‘
‘Fabrice Pradon has an excellent understanding of the aviation sector and is pragmatic in his approach.‘
DLA Piper fields a full-service aviation practice; it counts Airbus as a client and also acts for defence service providers, manufacturers and suppliers. As well as handling work related to litigation, arbitration, employment and insurance, the Paris-based team has a strong track record negotiating and drafting commercial contracts. The firm recently introduced its third-party funding option, enabling the non-recourse financing of the costs of a litigation or arbitration claim by a third party with no prior connection to it, allowing clients without capital to pursue meritorious claims. Litigator Vonnick Le Guillou leads the department and is an expert in insurance liability claims. She is assisted by global co-chair of the aerospace group, Gregory Tulquois who is focused on strategic transactions and is a member of the New York and Paris Bars. Counsel Sophie Cochery joined the team from HMN & Partners in early 2020 bringing with her specialism in insurance and reinsurance matters.
Other key lawyers:
Gregory Tulquois; Sophie Cochery
CHINA EASTERN AIRLINES
LA REUNION AERIENNE
Airbus Defense Space
- Advised Andera Partners and Omnes Capital on the acquisition of 100% of majority shareholding in the group Spherea.
Signature Litigation AARPI
Boutique litigation practice Signature Litigation AARPI has continued to grow since its opening in Paris in January 2019 with the arrival of international commercial arbitration specialist Flore Poloni from August Debouzy in September 2020. The firm's focus on dispute resolution and insurance matters makes it a popular choice for a range of clients in the aviation industry including airlines, constructors, and insurers who benefit from the department's ability to advise on cross-border matters. With a strong track record in product liability cases relating to high-profile accidents, the group counts several industry leaders including Boeing, Global Aerospace and Rolls Royce as clients. Founding partner Thomas Rouhette is highly regarded for his work on cross-border contentious matters.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team is very responsive – we would normally receive a response on the same day or early the day after. They keep us updated regularly, and are knowledgeable in their fields of expertise.‘
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty
The Boeing Company
Continental Motors Inc.
- Assisting Boeing with the French law aspects of the 737 MAX-related disputes.
- Representing Continental Motors Inc. in proceedings following the hard landing of a Cirrus SR22 aircraft which experienced an engine failure in cruise flight during which both the pilot and his wife sustained serious injuries.
- Representing Honeywell International Inc., in court proceedings introduced by Valljet, a French business aviation company, following the repair and replacement of aircraft engines.
Clifford Chance houses a multi-disciplinary aviation practice, whose offering spans acquisitions, joint ventures, procurement, service agreements and litigation. Notably, the team has a strong track record advising clients on PFI/PPP projects in the context of major commercial and industrial projects. The department is fully integrated within the firm's global aviation group, offering a seamless service for cross-border aviation leasing and financing work, and also works in close tandem with the projects, securitisation capital markets and tax teams to provide a holistic service for clients. Transaction specialists Fabrice Cohen, Dessislava Savova and Yves Wehrli jointly lead the practice.
‘This practice has a longstanding relationship with the Aerospace sector. Its knowledge, experience and client friendly attitude makes it a first choice when outsourcing legal work.‘
‘I commend the dedication and determination of Dessislava Savova to deliver such high quality work under extreme time pressure.‘
‘Clifford Chance offers solid expertise in diverse jurisdictions, across many countries, always offering clients a coordinated experience.‘
ATR (Avions de Transport Régional G.I.E.)
Airbus Defence & Space
Cessna Citation European Service Center
- Represented Airbus in a corruption case with the French enforcement authority.
Boutique criminal and commercial litigation firm Courrégé-Foreman's presence in the banking, energy and transportation sectors makes it a popular choice for aviation industry clients including civil aviation authorities, manufacturers, airport operators, air traffic control authorities and pilots. Founding partners Mauricia Courrégé and Simon Foreman are experienced litigators representing both claimants and defendants, especially in claims related to accidents. The team notably represented Safran Helicopter Engines in criminal and civil proceedings initiated following an engine stoppage which led to a helicopter crash.
AEROPORTS DE PARIS
GLOBAL AEROSPACE INC
LA REUNION AERIENNE
- Acting for Safran Helicopter Engines in criminal and civil proceedings initiated following an engine stoppage which caused a helicopter crash in which five lives were lost.
As one of the firm's core sectors, HFW's aviation practice has expertise across transactional, regulatory and contentious work, and is a go-to team for advice relating to leasing and the renovation of aircrafts on behalf of independent French long-haul airlines. Other clients include insurers, airports, aircraft maintenance providers and handling agents, who also benefit from the in-house aviation finance team. Splitting his time between Paris and Brussels, Pierre Frühling jointly leads the practice alongside commercial litigator Jean-Baptiste Charles, who is a board member of the French Air and Space Law Association.
Air Tahiti Nui
All Nippon Airways
Arkia Israeli Airlines
Delta Air Lines
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
La Réunion Aérienne
Mont Blanc Helicopteres / HBG Group
- Advising several foreign carriers, including Delta Air Lines and Aeromexico, on the French regulatory issues arising out of the Covid crisis, including access to the French territory and passenger compensation schemes.
- Defending the French airline Air Corsica against a collective action by the consumers organisation UFC Que Choisir to prevent the use of vouchers to compensate passengers.
- Representing the leading French aviation insurer Global Aerospace in several liability matters including damage to a Qatar Airways A330 during maintenance.
Kennedys has a firm focus on insurance and liability litigation and a range of expertise related to the aviation industry, where it is regularly instructed in French law matters. Aurélia Cadain leads the carriers’ liability practice and Nicolas Bouckaert is the key contact for aerospace product liability matters. The department is also well versed in transport and cargo claims and is typically retained by airlines, aerospace manufacturers and insurers.
‘The lawyers at Kennedy’s are strategically minded and are well able to tackle technical problems.‘
‘Nicolas Bouckaert is highly experienced with an excellent strategic vision.‘
‘Very good communication skills, willing to listen and learn.‘
Founded in 2018, aeronautics and aviation boutique firm Leno Avocats provides a range of legal counselling and litigation services to a client list comprised of airports, manufacturers, aircraft companies and insurers. The practice is typically retained on passenger and freight transport aviation liability matters, insurance and reinsurance, and commercial and financial transactions. Co-founders Beatrice Fleuris and Laura Dubois are the key names and handle domestic and international work, with the US market particularly important with the firm working closely with a number of US firms.
‘Excellent team, accessible and reactive.‘
‘It is always a pleasure to work with Beatrice Fleuris. She is always available and efficient in delivering legal analysis and strategic recommendations.‘
La Réunion Aérienne
ERGO Versicherung AG
Lloyd’s of London
Union des Aéroports Français
Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty
- Representing an aircraft GSE and tools manufacturer and its insurer within a court-ordered expertise and product liability claim following a maintenance incident, which caused the drop of an A380 engine.
- Representing Union des Aéroports Français and its liability insurers in every case and event where the airport may have a civil and criminal liability exposure.
- Representing a helicopter operator and its insurer following the crash of an Enstrom 480B helicopter aircraft in Czech Republic during a training lesson.