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Aviation Disputes

United Kingdom

CMS’s aviation team has broad experience of advising clients across the aviation industry on large-scale commercial litigation and arbitration, aircraft repossession, cross-border aviation liability, hull claims and (re)insurance policy coverage. We act for a broad spectrum of aircraft owners, operators and manufacturers, engine and components manufacturers, as well as airport authorities and ground handlers.

Our experienced team has a deep understanding of the aviation industry and are familiar with advising on the specifics of aviation liability, from Convention rights to domestic regulation and common law claims.  

We work closely with specialist colleagues in areas such as aviation financing, planning and real estate work including airports, cyber risks and technology, media, telecoms and corporate finance. 

Our experience includes advising:

  • Kuwait Airways on multiple actions including appeals up to the House of Lords following the theft of its fleet, including actions for perjury, conversion of spare parts, and worldwide enforcement. The case resulted in a $ 1.4bn judgment and a significant commercial/state settlement.
  • An airline in litigation relating to the supply and defective design of the ICE system on a fleet if aircraft leading to critical overheating of the cabling and individual equipment. 
  • A Fortune 500 entity on a multi-million dollar dispute in respect of an aircraft sale and purchase agreement including a stakeholder application.
  • A joint task force with the Metropolitan Police, FBI and FAA Inspectorate General’s Department on investigating stolen and bogus spares and forged/false back to birth spares records.  The enquiry led to raids on 37 premises and a complete overhaul of regulation and practice.
  • Boeing Corp and insurers in the recovery of aircraft from a war zone. This included extensive work on the maintenance of aircraft on ground (AOG) for extended periods.
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