Aviation Regulatory and Administrative Practice

Helping clients understand and shape rulemakings initiated by the various agencies that regulate aviation is a central part of our practice.  Our regulatory work focuses primarily on the US Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), as well as the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), other US agencies and foreign civil aviation authorities.

We counsel and represent US and foreign airlines, tour operators, forwarders, shippers, manufacturers, and industry trade associations on the following:

  • Airline alliances;
  • Codesharing and other cooperative agreements;
  • Airport and airspace access;
  • Route authority;
  • Antitrust immunity;
  • Certification and licensing;
  • Competition;
  • Flight operations;
  • Foreign investment in US airlines;
  • Fare advertising and internet displays;
  • Noise;
  • Transportation of hazardous materials;
  • Essential air service;
  • Mergers and acquisitions;
  • Environmental concerns; and
  • Security and safety regulation.  

In addition, we work with the Department of State and foreign governments on bilateral and multilateral aviation issues and serve as an advisor in international negotiations.

We regularly assist clients in evaluating and preparing comments in a -variety of agency proceedings.  Examples of major rulemakings in which our lawyers have represented clients include Flight and Duty Limitations and Rest Requirements (FAA); Enhancing Airline Passenger Protections (DOT); Congestion, Delay Reduction and Operating Limitations at airports (FAA); and Air Cargo Security Requirements (TSA).  

Jenner & Block lawyers have substantial experience representing airlines in securing operating authority at airports and overflight rights and also advising on legal and competitive issues associated with airport operations.  Our lawyers represent airlines in slot proceedings at slot-controlled airports and advise on the acquisition of slots and other operating rights.  In addition, we handle airport environmental claims involving airline operations.  In connection with computer reservations systems, our lawyers represent airlines in DOT proceedings to help clients reduce potential anticompetitive impacts.  

Our lawyers also have extensive experience advising certificated entities and investor groups on the regulatory implications and hurdles of acquisition and merger transactions structured as either stock or asset purchases, as well as other transactions resulting in changes in control or citizenship.

Our professionals are immersed in the industry they serve and have extensive relationships with all sectors of the industry, including at the highest levels of key agencies.   We have participated on task forces appointed by the Secretary of Transportation as well as committees appointed by the FAA administrator to develop recommendations for changes to regulations.  Our practitioners are actively involved in speaking and writing on aviation topics as well as contributing their knowledge to FAA rulemaking committees, aviation associations, and industry seminars.  Recognized as some of the top aviation lawyers in the  United States, our professionals have decades of experience helping aviation and aerospace clients successfully navigate the complex regulatory landscape.