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Sidley is the destination firm for passenger and cargo airlines, aircraft manufacturers, equipment finance borrowers and lenders, executives, board members, investors, and suppliers for all types of aviation matters. As counsel to some of the world’s largest airlines and air cargo companies, our transactional lawyers advise on multibillion-dollar M&A deals, financing for aircraft and engines, airports and other aviation infrastructure, equipment leasing, IT, and a wide array of procurement arrangements. Our litigators represent clients in matters arising out of major airline accidents and complex antitrust disputes. Our inter-disciplinary team of regulatory lawyers advises clients on government strategies, government contracts, and a variety of regulatory matters directly affecting airlines and aviation. The global nature of our practice spans jurisdictions and borders, enabling us to assist with transactions throughout Asia, North and South America, the Middle East, Africa, and Europe.

“Sidley Austin has a great team and are a go-to firm for aviation transactional work.”
Chambers USA 2024: Transportation: Aviation: Transactional

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Sidley’s transactional and corporate lawyers handle the corporate and commercial needs of airlines and other aviation clients, including mergers and acquisitions, global alliances and other cross-border transactions, restructuring and workouts, capital markets and other corporate finance, equipment finance and leasing, corporate governance, executive compensation, shareholder activism, and many other matters.


Sidley litigators have extensive experience representing U.S.-based and foreign clients involved in the aviation industry, including handling cases in litigation as well as providing advice and counseling with respect to liability risks, contractual warranty and indemnity issues, insurance and other issues related to aviation.

As part of its aviation-related and broad commercial litigation practice, Sidley has represented clients in commercial disputes involving aircraft purchase agreements, aircraft modification, airline frequent flier program promotions, regulatory, insurance and lease issues, some of which have involved the defense of class action lawsuits.


Sidley regulatory lawyers bring their extensive governmental experience to the representation of airlines and aviation industry participants in connection with governmental and other regulatory agencies in the United States, EU and other jurisdictions around the globe, handling matters involving tariffs, antitrust and competition laws, and data privacy and security.


Sidley has one of the premier, multi-jurisdictional aviation restructuring practices, and we have advised clients in virtually every aviation restructuring over the past 20 years. Our global restructuring team is led by experienced lawyers ideally placed to advise companies, creditors, and financing parties on domestic and multi-jurisdictional matters, ranging from out-of-court restructurings to formal insolvency proceedings across the globe. We represent air carriers, operators, equipment manufacturers, lessors, secured lenders (including DIP Lenders), official committees, bondholders, investors, and equity sponsors in all facets of aviation restructurings – in both the fixed and rotor wing space. Our recent engagements have included advising clients in the Avianca, LATAM, AeroMexico, Philippines Airlines, Republic Airlines, PHI Aviation, CHC Helicopters and Bristow Aviation Chapter 11 cases, and the Virgin Atlantic proceedings in the UK.