Next Generation Partners

Transport: Aviation in Panama

Galindo, Arias & López

Galindo, Arias & López remains a standout in the field of aviation finance, with a particular strength in advising airlines, including Panamanian flag carrier Copa Airlines as well as an array of foreign carriers. The team frequently advises on the acquisition, financing and leasing of aircraft, drawing on its close links with international firms to handle high-profile, cross-border transactions, and also assists with corporate and regulatory matters, such as the certification of cargo and passenger airlines. Cristina Lewis, who is renowned for her experience in aviation finance, leads the team. The key names at junior level are consultant Daniel Sessa, who has significant expertise in commercial and financing issues in the aviation sector, and regulatory-focused associate Claudia Juárez.

Practice head(s):

Cristina Lewis

Key clients

Copa Holdings

Copa Airlines

Aerorepublica (Copa Colombia)

Air Transat

Cargolux Airlines International

Panama Air Cargo Terminal

La Nueva Aerolinea

Academia Latinoamericana de Aviación (ALAS)

Continent Maritime

Gol Aerotech

MTU Maintenance Berlin-Branderburg

MTU Maintenance Hannover

Work highlights

  • Advised Copa Holdings in connection with the purchase and financing of four Boeing 737-9 MAX aircraft delivered to its subsidiary, Copa Airlines, under a financing guaranteed by the Export-Import Bank of the United States of America (EXIM).
  • Advising Copa Airlines on all Panamanian legal matters involved in the payoff of guaranteed loans, initially contracted to finance the acquisition of several of its aircraft.
  • Advised Canadian international airline Air Transat on its certification process as a foreign airline in Panama.

Pardini & Asociados

The ‘excellent‘ aviation team at Pardini & Asociados is commended for its wide-ranging expertise in the sector, which spans transactional, regulatory and contentious matters. The firm is particularly sought after by international clients for its expertise in aviation-related litigation, with an emphasis on cases involving liability for damages caused to cargo. In addition, the team assists an impressive client roster of international airlines with contractual and regulatory issues relating to their operations in Panama. Practice co-head Juan José Espino focuses on aviation disputes, while fellow department head Juan Francisco Pardini is the name to note for corporate, financial and regulatory matters. At the associate level, senior attorney Eduardo Achurra handles regulatory and permitting issues, and attorney Adrián Rivera provides key support in litigation.

Practice head(s):

Juan Francisco Pardini; Juan José Espino


An excellent team.

Juan Francisco Pardini and Eduardo Achurra stand out for their excellent work.

Key clients

United Airlines



Air China

MLM Leasing

EuroWings Discover

Work highlights

  • Advising EuroWings Discover, an affiliate of Lufthansa, on the beginning of its operations in Panama, including all contractual and regulatory matters.
  • Advising FedEx on the renewal of its airline licence with the Civil Aviation Authority of Panama and with employment issues involved with its operations in Panama.
  • Advising United Airlines on all corporate, transactional and regulatory issues.

Patton, Moreno & Asvat

As the Panamanian member of L2b Aviation, a global network of independent aviation law firms, Patton, Moreno & Asvat is well positioned to advise a host of international clients, including commercial and private airlines, creditors, lessors and lessees, on aviation matters. Aviation finance is among the core areas of expertise for the team, which routinely handles the acquisition, sale and leasing of aircraft; other notable strengths include aircraft registration, permitting and regulatory matters, and civil and commercial disputes. Practice head María de Lourdes Marengo is a high-profile name for aviation finance, as well as commercial and regulatory issues in the sector.

Delvalle, Escalona, Levy & Corró

Hailed by clients for its ‘extensive industry knowledge‘, the ‘exceptional group of attorneys‘ at Delvalle, Escalona, Levy & Corró continues to rapidly expand its aviation law practice, acting for a growing list of international and regional airlines, aviation leasing companies and international aviation associations. The team is particularly skilled in advising new and established airlines on the regulatory issues relating to the launch of their Panamanian branches, including registration and obtaining air operator certificates (AOCs). It also assists large foreign carriers with day-to-day regulatory, corporate, labour and tax issues affecting their operations in Panama, supported by the multidisciplinary firm’s other departments. Felipe Escalona, who wins praise for ‘perfectly meeting‘ clients’ requirements, leads the team.

Practice head(s):

Felipe Escalona


‘They are proactive and diligent attorneys. They meet clients’ requirements with great speed.’

‘Aviation law is a specialty that is not usually available in multidisciplinary law firms and requires up-to-date knowledge and experience that is difficult to find. As an in-house lawyer, I need experience, knowledge, reliability, confidence and fast responses from external firms; my contact at Delvalle, Escalona, Levy & Corró, Felipe Escalona, perfectly meets these needs. I must add that the personalised service is excellent. The firm’s best quality is that it meets all the above-mentioned requirements.’

‘Delvalle, Escalona, Levy & Corró has an exceptional group of attorneys. They attend to clients’ needs very quickly with extensive industry knowledge and in-depth legal knowledge.’

‘Personalised service and rapid responses.’

‘Professionalism, knowledge and friendliness.’

‘In aviation law matters, the team at DELCO has two extraordinary qualities: know-how and know-who. That combination makes their services successful and highly competitive.’

‘Their singular passion for providing a good service means each assignment is carried out energetically, with enthusiasm and optimism.’

Key clients

Turkish Airlines

Cargojet Airways



Air Europa

Gate Gourmet

Servicios Aéreos Nacionales (SANSA)

Viva Aerobus (Aeroenlaces Nacionales)

Air Panama

Airports Council International – Latin America and the Caribbean (ACI-LAC)

Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes


Atlas Air

Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge

Líneas Aéreas Suramericanas

Work highlights

  • Advising Arajet on establishing its presence in Panama and securing all required permits to operate as a foreign air carrier in Panama, including the AOC.
  • Advised Costa Rica-based regional airline Servicios Aéreos Nacionales (SANSA) on obtaining all the necessary permits to operate regular flights to Bocas del Toro.
  • Advising Air Panama on the continued expansion of its operations.