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Aviation Litigation 101: Facts and Fiction

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Produced on September 27, 2016

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Course Information

Time 1h 32m
Difficulty Beginner
Topics covered in this course: Litigation Aviation

Course Description

Moderator Frederick Alimonti, joined by distinguished aviation law practitioners Abram I. Bohrer, Daniel O. Rose, and John Maggio, shares insights and experiences in aviation litigation.

The panel addresses the various components of aviation litigation. Among the myths Alimonti, Bohrer, Rose, and Maggio confront is the notion that aviation litigation is necessarily a highly specialized and technical area of the law. While this is true for certain cases, the majority of aviation litigation cases would be very familiar to the tort practitioner, often sounding in premises liability, product liability, or turning on the interpretation of contractual agreements.

Indeed, the focus of this walk through exemplar aviation litigation topics and cases will likely expand your appreciation for the breadth of cases and issues that can arise in the context of “aviation litigation." These include laws and treaties related to international travel by air; concepts of federalism and preemption, product liability, choice and conflicts of law, and insurance and indemnity – just to name a few. So “come on in, the air is fine,” and explore the surprisingly broad practice area of “Aviation Litigation.” 

Learning Objectives:
  1. Understand the four common types of aviation cases/disputes: airline, product liability, general aviation, and insurance coverage and indemnity analysis
  2. Dispel the myth that all aviation cases are hyper-technical and require engineering or piloting experience
  3. Examine a variety of concepts encountered in handling aviation litigation, including international law, federal regulatory law, local and state tort law, contract interpretation, and premises liability
  4. Review noteworthy and recent cases affecting the broad umbrella of law we refer to as aviation litigation

Credit Information

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Abram Bohrer

Bohrer & Lukeman

Admitted: New York Bar, 1992, New Jersey Bar, 1991, United States District Court, District of New Jersey, 1991, , United States District Court, Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, 1992.

Biography: New York Super Lawyers, Personal Injury Practice, 2009, 2008 and 2007. Top 100 Super Lawyers, New York Area, 2009; Law Review, Touro College, Fuchsberg Law Center, Author, "Civil Forfeiture and its Effect on the Presumption of Innocence"; Lecturer and Panelist, Federal Discovery, New York State Trial Lawyers Association, April, 1999; Guest Lecturer, Touro College, Fuchsberg Law Center, Products Liability; Senior Partner, Bohrer & Lukeman; Member: New York State Trial Lawyers Association, New York County's Lawyers Association, Vice- Chairman, Aviation and Space Law Committee, Tort Law Section of the American Bar Association, 2004-2005.

Education: George Washington University, BA Economics, 1987 Touro College, Fuchsberg Law Center, JD Cum Laude, 1991, Dean's List all Semesters, Recipient, Best Oral Advocate, American Jurisprudence Award, Criminal Law.

Frederick Alimonti

Alimonti Law Offices, P.C.

Founder and Senior Partner Rick Alimonti brings over twenty years of aviation and insurance litigation experience to the firm. His experience includes product liability, airline law, general aviation, and aviation insurance coverage. Martindale-Hubble lists Mr. Alimonti as an “AV” peer-reviewed lawyer, the highest rating awarded by the organization. 

Mr. Alimonti is a member of the Southern District of New York’s mediation panel and has been appointed to the SDNY Mediator Advisory Committee. He is a member of the Alternative Dispute Resolution section of the American Bar Association and of the Dispute Resolution Section of the New York State Bar Association. He founded Alimonti Mediation Services in 2012 to mediate disputes involving product liability, premises liability, aviation law and commercial disputes. Rick recently became affiliated with “Mediators Plus More,” a New York-based panel of private mediators that matches mediator expertise and experience to the dispute at issue. http://mediatorsplusmore.com/.

Alimonti Law Offices is a frequent provider of CLE-accredited programs in the United States and abroad. In June 2014, Mr. Alimonti was a panelist at the ABA National Institute on Aviation Litigation and presented “Trying not to Stress the Small Stuff, Tips on the Effective Handling of Non-Catastrophic Aviation Cases” and was also a panelist at the 48th Annual SMU Airlaw Symposium in Dallas, Texas, where he presented “Ethics in Negotiation and Mediation.” In June 2013, Mr. Alimonti was a panelist on ethical issues at the ABA Aviation Litigation Seminar in NYC. In June 2012, Mr. Alimonti presented “Defending and Managing Claims involving Unruly Passengers” at the ACI Conference in Boston, MA. In 2011, he presented a paper at the ABA Section of Litigation, Joint Committee Meeting in Snowmass, Colorado, and he presented “Ethics in Aviation Litigation” at the 2011 SMU Air Law Symposium and at the 2011 Aviation Litigation CLE Seminar at the NYC Bar Association. 

Mr. Alimonti’s academic contributions to the field of aviation law include the formation and launch of the American Bar Association’s highly successful first Annual Seminar on Aviation Litigation in 1995. This program continues as an annual institution in New York to this day. Mr. Alimonti has twice served as chair of the ABA’s Aviation Litigation Committee. His positions include:

  • Co-chair of the ABA Litigation Section’s Standing Committee on Aviation Litigation for three-year term (1995 -1998; August 2007 - 2009) 
  • Meeting Chair, ABA CLE on Aviation Litigation, New York (2006, 2007, 2010)
  • Member, Task Force on the Public Perception of the Legal Profession (2004-2007)
  • Co-chair of the ABA, Litigation Section’s Standing Committee on Solo and Small Firms (2001-2004)
  • Division Co-Director for the ABA Litigation Section (2001)
  • Litigation Section’s Co-Chair for the ABA Annual Meeting in New York (2000) 

Mr. Alimonti is a regular speaker on aviation law, mediation and ethics. He has presented and published numerous articles including the following:


  • “Trying not to Stress the Small Stuff, Tips on the Effective Handling of Non-Catastrophic Aviation Cases”, delivered at ABA National Institute on Aviation Litigation, New York, NY (2014)
  •  “Ethics in Negotiation and Mediation” delivered at 48th Annual SMU Airlaw Symposium in Dallas, Texas, (2014)  
  • “Defending and Managing Claims Involving Unruly Passengers”, delivered at ACI Conference on Defending and Managing Aviation Litigation, Boston MA (June 2012)
  • “Fighting Fire with Water, Dealing with Difficult Adversaries” (Litigation, Fall 2008)
  • “Ethical Hurdles Along the Way: Ethical Issues when Representing an Insured in an Aviation Case” (ABA 2007)
  • Columnist: Young Lawyer’s Corner. Aviation Litigation Quarterly (ABA 2006-2008)
  • “Who’s in Charge Here Anyway? Ethical Issues When Representing an Insured,” THE BRIEF, VOL 36, NO. 2 (WINTER 2007)

Mr. Alimonti received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Fordham University and his Juris Doctor from St. John’s University Law School. He is admitted to practice in the State of New York, the U.S. District Courts for the Southern, Eastern, and Northern Districts of New York, and the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second, Fourth, and Eleventh Circuits. He serves as the President of the Board of Trustees for the New Jersey Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum at Teterboro, New Jersey and is a private pilot. 

Daniel O. Rose

Kreindler & Kreindler LLP

Daniel Rose joined Kreindler & Kreindler LLP in 1997 and became a partner in 2004. He specializes in aviation, maritime and products liability accident litigation.

Mr. Rose has a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Binghamton University and is a graduate of Fordham University Law School, where he was on the Dean's List and a member of the Fordham International Law Journal. After law school, he served as Law Clerk to United States District Court Judge Paul V. Gadola in the Eastern District of Michigan.

Before attending law school, Mr. Rose served in the United States Navy as a carrier-based attack pilot on board the U.S.S. Independence, where he participated in Desert Shield.

Mr. Rose is a licensed commercial multi-engine airplane and seaplane pilot with instrument ratings. He is an active pilot and has accumulated over 2,000 hours of flight time.

Mr. Rose has handled numerous commercial airline, commuter, military and general aviation crash cases, including the American Airlines Flight 587, SwissAir Flight 111, Comair 5191 and Colgan/Continental Flight 3407 litigations. He has prosecuted numerous product liability cases involving a wide range of aviation products including engines, fuel systems, autopilot systems, avionics and flight control systems against various aircraft, and component part, manufacturers including Boeing, McDonnell Douglas, Airbus, Raytheon, Embraer, Beech, Cirrus, Cessna, Mitsubishi, Piper, Socata, Honeywell, Pratt & Whitney and General Electric.

Mr. Rose has also prosecuted numerous maritime negligence and wrongful death claims under the Jones Act, the Death On the High Seas Act and the General Maritime Law against various defendants including Lockheed Martin, Vulcan Materials, Bean, Moran and other maritime employers as well as claims against cruise lines such as Princess, Norwegian and Carnival and claims arising out of the tour boat capsizing on Lake George.

Mr. Rose has also prosecuted numerous products liability cases including automotive defect claims against Ford, General Motors, Nissan, Volkswagen and Volvo.

Mr. Rose has also prosecuted numerous wrongful death and serious personal injury negligence cases including pedestrian and swimmer run-over cases.

Mr. Rose has tried cases in federal and state courts.

Mr. Rose is admitted to the bars of New York and New Jersey, the United States District Courts for the Southern, Eastern and Northern Districts of New York, the District of New Jersey, the Western District of Michigan, the Northern District of Illinois and the Northern District of Florida. He is also admitted to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, where he has successfully argued appeals. He has appeared pro hac vice in numerous courts throughout the United States.

Mr. Rose is a past Chair of the American Bar Association, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, Aviation & Space Law Committee and of the American Association for Justice ("AAJ") Aviation Law Section; and is a member of the AAJ Admiralty Law Section; the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Aeronautics Committee; the Lawyer-Pilots Bar Association, and the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

Mr. Rose is an approved volunteer pilot for the Veterans Airlift Command (http://www.veteransairlift.org) where he flies wounded veterans of Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes.

John Maggio

Condon & Forsyth LLP

Over the years John has represented air carriers, aircraft manufacturers, and insurers in wrongful death, personal injury and contractual litigation.

In 2014 and 2015, John was named a Super Lawyer in Aviation & Aerospace for the New York Metro area. He was selected in 2011 as a New York Super Lawyer “Rising Star.” He was also honored with the Emory Law School 2008 Alumni Service Award. Before joining Condon & Forsyth in 1999, John practiced law on Long Island with a focus on commercial, premises and products liability litigation. John is listed as Leading Aviation Attorney by Aviation Expert Guides 2016.

He is a member of the Nassau County Bar Association, the American Bar Association (Air & Space Law Litigation Section), Association of Transportation Law Professional (Vice President) and Emory Law Alumni Board (President-Elect).

At Emory University School of Law he served on the Moot Court Executive Board, was inducted into Order of Barristers, and was a Dean’s Research and Writing Fellow.


John has extensive experience litigating claims governed by the Warsaw Convention, Montreal Convention, Airline Deregulation Act, and other international treaties and U.S. aviation statutes.

He has also handled litigation involving copyright and trademark infringement disputes and employment issues. John has litigated in federal and state courts throughout the U.S., including trials in California, New York, Florida and Texas and has argued appeals in the United States Courts of Appeals for the Second, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits.

In addition to his legal practice, John has served as a Faculty Member for the Kessler-Eidson Program for Trial Techniques at Emory University School of Law since 2004 and as a legal writing instructor for the Continuing Legal Education Paralegal Program at Queens College from 1998 to 2004.

Newsletters and Bulletins

July 27, 2016 | Client Bulletins

Trademarks in the Aviation Industry: Protecting the Brand Requires Proactivity

May 2, 2016 | Client Bulletins

Department of Transportation Provisionally Approves Norwegian Air International Limited’s Permit Application to Operate Flights to the U.S.

October 16, 2015 | Client Bulletins

Endorsement of Check Offered in “Full and Final Settlement” Precludes Passenger’s $1 Million Lost Baggage Lawsuit

August 26, 2015 | Client Bulletins

Eleventh Circuit Clarifies an Airline’s Qualification as a Government-Owned Entity

September 19, 2014 | Client Bulletins

Federal Court in Florida Clarifies Standard of Liability on Failure to Divert Claims

January 10, 2014 | Client Alerts

Significant Developments in Medicare Law

September 1, 2012 | Client Bulletins

Failure to Check-in On Time Is Fatal to Passengers’ Claims

July 1, 2011 | Client Bulletins

With Two Products Liability Cases, U.S. Supreme Court Clarifies, then Muddles, the “Stream of Commerce” Theory of Personal Jurisdiction


Michael G.

Excellent panel; very interesting presentation.

Matthew H.

Most interesting CLE I have watched in the last 10 years.

Charles S.

Excellent round table format with experienced practitioners

Alexander G.

Really engaging course on an interesting subject. As an attorney on the corporate/finance side of the aviation industry, I learned a lot.

Arlen E.

Excellent presentation. Panelists were very knowledgeable and the discussion was very interesting and informative.

David C.

Fascinating course. Great presenters!!!!

John O.

4 truly competent and articulate presenters

Harry C.


Arie E.

Very interesting and informative. Great contributions from all panelists.

Heather R. W.

Enjoyable panel presentation covering both plaintiff and defense perspectives.

Louis t. A.

Very interesting. Enjoyed panel

Mallory B.

It was great watching a panel of plaintiff and defense attorneys!

Timur N.

Excellent program on aviation law, especially for beginners or those who do not practice aviation law.

susan d.

Great course and forum - especially appreciated the panel approach and the example cases to exemplify points made.

Gene P.

Very good presentation!

Douglas B.

Good program.

Daniel B.

Brilliant panel.

Louis D.

Fact filled presentation that flowed well

Thomas I.

This was a very interesting and engaging panel of practitioners!

Julia R.

engaging discussion

Peter N.

Good speakers

Edward N.

Good panel discussion

Michael G.

I was surprised by how informative and interesting the subject material was. Great job by the presenters.

Kenneth R.

Very good panel. Lot's of interesting case experience that they shared.

William A.

As a former Boeing employee, I have a greater understanding of plaintiff's arguments.

John M.

Excellent program, panel was very good

Sean O.

Great CLE--very informative.

Theodore L.

One of those topics where several distinct, even adversarial voices give more insight AND often spontaneously raise good substantive issues (sometimes because chair asked dreaded open-ended questions). Good new area, plus solid insights on broad principles.

June B. F.

Excellent Presentation

Richard G.

Excellent, informative program, presented by a knowledgeable panel.

Quietta B.


Greg D.

Good, balanced panel.

Jeffrey T.

Panel format pretty fantastic. Recommend that for more courses.

Carissa M.

Very interesting and loved the multi-person panel!

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