Aviation Law

We represent air operators, including domestic and international air carriers, in regulatory, litigious and commercial matters.

We provide advice on the establishment of air services and assist in navigating the manifold legal requirements from start-up to mature operation. We regularly appear on our clients’ behalf in provincial and federal courts and represent them before the Canadian Transportation Agency, Transport Canada, the Canada Border Services Agency and other tribunals and departments of government involved in the administration of laws affecting the aviation industry. Representative experience of members of our aviation group is summarized below.

Technical Regulation

  • Obtaining operating certificates and technical authorizations from Transport Canada;
  • Representation in enforcement proceedings arising out of the handling of dangerous goods;
  • Advising on compliance with dangerous goods regulations;
  • Representing clients in maintenance enforcement actions;
  • Representing carriers following major accident and responding to allegations of regulatory non-compliance;
  • Representing carriers in course of investigations by the Transportation Safety Board;
  • Advising on policy applied to the regulation of aircraft subject to a fractional ownership scheme;
  • Assisting in formulation of industry position in response to proposed amendments to the Aeronautics Act.

Economic Regulation

  • Obtaining scheduled and non-scheduled licences from the Canadian Transportation Agency;
  • Representing clients in applications for waiver of regulatory requirements;
  • Advising on the negotiation of code share agreements;
  • Obtaining approval of wet-lease and code share agreements;
  • Representing carriers in negotiations with customs and immigration authorities on issues related to improperly documented arrivals;
  • Advising clients respecting airport access;
  • Advising on the application of Canadian ownership and control requirements to particular transactions;
  • Representing clients involved in corporate re-arrangements with respect to transfer of licence authority;
  • Representing clients in enforcement proceedings, including proceedings related to the provision of services for persons with disabilities;
  • Advising clients on bilateral relations and the evolution of Canada’s international air policy.


  • Representing air carriers in court proceedings following major air disasters;
  • Representing air carriers in response to claims for damages arising out of personal injury, delay and property loss;
  • Representing air carriers in disputes with sales agents and service providers;
  • Representing air carriers in proceedings before the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal;
  • Representing other air operators in contract and tort actions;
  • Advising air carriers on competition law and policy.

General Commercial Operations

  • Providing advice on business start-up;
  • Obtaining licences to carry on business;
  • Protecting intellectual property;
  • Defining relationships with local suppliers;
  • Consulting on product distribution issues;
  • Advising on local employment requirements.