Jim’s aviation experience gives him a unique perspective in advising aircraft owners and operators on all aspects of aviation law.
The depth of his experience spans complex aviation transactions, including aircraft acquisition and sales, financing and leasing transactions, and operational issues. His extensive experience in aviation matters extends to the interaction of Federal Aviation Administration and Internal Revenue Service considerations of aircraft acquisition, operation and leasing, including joint ownership structures, fractional ownership structures, leasing and interchange agreements.
Jim also counsels clients on federal and state tax issues relating to aviation, including like-kind exchanges of aircraft, state sales and use tax matters, and federal excise tax issues. He frequently assists clients in negotiating the acquisition of new aircraft, previously owned aircraft and undivided interests in aircraft under programs such as NetJets, Flexjet, Flight Options, Delta AirElite and Jet Linx. Among other matters, Jim has:
- Advised on all legal and tax aspects of buying, selling, and financing aircraft including drafting and negotiating letters of intent and purchase agreements; advising on tax issues including 1031 like-kind exchanges (both forward and reverse exchanges), depreciation, and state sales and use tax planning; and establishing owner trusts for U.S. registered foreign-owned aircraft.
- Represented clients purchasing and selling fractional shares of aircraft with all of the major fractional programs, including loan and lease documents, like-kind exchanges, and dispute resolution with respect to resale value of fractional shares.
- Represented various companies in complex ownership and operating structures for aircraft with multiple owners.
- Consulted with large and small companies in establishing commercial contracts for, and providing regulatory advice on, aircraft ownership and operational issues, including purchase and lease of hangars, management and crew arrangements, storage and maintenance, and aircraft modification.
- Provided FAA regulatory advice to structure operations to comply with Federal Aviation Regulations while allowing for aircraft use by related companies, persons and entities through dry leases, interchange agreements, joint ownership agreements and time-sharing arrangements.
- Negotiated agreements with charter management companies and advised aircraft owners regarding FAA’s policies on “wet leasing” aircraft for charter.
- Advised public and private companies on personal use of company aircraft, and related income recognition, deduction limitation and SEC disclosure issues.
- Drafted corporate aircraft use policies to cover personal use, carriage of political candidates, SEC reporting and related matters.