Special Interest Group
Commercial aviation is growing fast and although accidents are declining, they still do happen. Passengers’ rights within Europe are regulated by The Montreal Convention, but in fact, the claimant’s rights to compensation are decided by the local law of the forum. The national rules of compensation are very individual for each European country and types of damages and damages levels can vary greatly.
A lawyer assisting an aviation claimant needs to do careful scrutiny of all potential countries’ rules and levels of compensation before a proper choice of forum can be made. An international air disaster will, therefore, demand a deep collaboration between lawyers in the jurisdictions involved.
As of 1 October 2023, David Short has replaced Stephan Eriksson as Chair of PEOPIL’s Aviation SIG. Rebecca Smith is appointed Secretary of the SIG.
Peopil’s Aviation SIG organises, together with McGill University Montreal’s Institute of Aviation and Aerospace Law, an International Aviation Conference every 2 years. The last edition was organised in Paris on 21 & 22 April 2023. David was a speaker at this conference.
David’s experience in aviation litigation spans some 35 years. He was first introduced to aviation law when instructed by the British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) to deal with aviation cases in 1988. He has represented pilots in numerous incidents, occurrences and accidents over the years. In addition to direct work for pilots, David has acted for passengers and pilots in 24 airline crash cases throughout the world involving airliners, military aircraft, light aircraft and helicopters. Recent cases involve product liability case against Airbus following the Turoy Norway Super Puma case accident. David is also still involved in MH17 and was involved in the Shoreham Airshow Accident and the Super Puma Sumburgh accident in Scotland.
His aim as Chair of the Aviation SIG is to share the decades of knowledge that he and other senior members of PEOPIL have with the new lawyers in PEOPIL and to encourage and exchange the sharing of information between all members for the benefit of existing and future clients.