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Disputing An Aircraft Mechanic's Lien

by Greg Reigel 31. May 2013 11:21
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What happens if someone records, or threatens to record, a mechanic or artisan lien against an aircraft and the aircraft's owner believes the lien is improper? After all, once recorded, a lien is a "cloud" on the title to the aircraft and, typically, a release or a court order is required to clear the aircraft's title.

So, how does the aircraft owner dispute the lien or have it released if it has been recorded? Fortunately, several options and strategies are available for dealing with the situation.

Resolution Through Negotiation


If the dispute is about the amount of money owed, the best way for the aircraft owner to resolve the situation is to try and reach some agreement with the lien claimant regarding the amount owed. This will certainly save both parties money in the long run. If the lien claimant refuses to settle, the lien claimant will incur significant expense if he or she has to initiate a lien foreclosure action.

Additionally, the lien claimant may also have exposure for slander of title if a court determines that the lien was improper. This could mean that the lien claimant would be required to pay not only the aircraft owner's costs and attorney's fees, but also any losses incurred by the aircraft owner if the lien prevented a sale of the aircraft or forced the aircraft owner to accept less in a sale than he or she would have in the absence of the lien.

Similarly, the aircraft owner will incur significant expense to defend against a mechanic's lien foreclosure action and, if unsuccessful, the aircraft owner could ultimately be required to pay the full amount of the lien plus the lien claimant's costs and attorney's fees. Also, in the meantime, the lien could prevent the aircraft owner from selling the aircraft.

Clearly, both parties have incentives to try and settle the lien claim to avoid the risks and expense associated with litigating the claim. However, if the parties cannot reach an agreement, litigation is available and may be required to resolve the situation.

Resolution Through Litigation


The Mechanics Lien Foreclosure Action
.  To enforce a mechanic lien against an aircraft, a lien claimant must start a lien foreclosure action. In the foreclosure action, the lien claimant asks the court to validate his or her lien and order the aircraft sold to pay the lien claimant the amount owed.

Once the foreclosure action is started, many jurisdictions allow the aircraft owner to post a bond or deposit money with the court to obtain a release of the mechanic's lien before the lawsuit is decided. The amount of the bond or deposit will vary, but is usually the amount of the lien claim plus some additional percentage of the claim (e.g. 125%-150%). The bond or deposit replaces the aircraft as security for the lien claimant's claim. When the court receives the bond or deposit, it then issues an order discharging or releasing the lien. A certified copy of the order must then be filed with the FAA Registry to clear the aircraft's title.

The aircraft owner also has the opportunity to defend against the lien claim in the foreclosure action and to assert any claims the aircraft owner may have against the lien claimant. One common defense to an aircraft mechanic's lien foreclosure action is that the lien was not properly perfected. In this situation, the aircraft owner asserts that the lien statement was not filed within the proper time period after the last day of work or that the lien claimant did not follow the proper procedures to perfect the lien. Similarly, if the foreclosure proceeding was not initiated within the time period allowed by law, the aircraft owner may also assert that defense.

Another defense an aircraft owner may assert is that the lien is invalid because the lien claimant is knowingly demanding an amount in excess of what is justly due. This defense is very common in situations where the aircraft owner initially disputed the amount being charged by the lien claimant. However, this defense usually requires that the aircraft owner show bad faith on the part of the lien claimant or that the lien claimant knew the lien statement was overstated.

If the aircraft owner is successful in defending against the foreclosure proceeding, the aircraft owner will also probably succeed in a slander of title claim against the lien claimant. An aircraft owner asserting a slander of title claim alleges that the lien claimant improperly encumbered the aircraft with an invalid lien. A slander of title claim could have serious and expensive implications for the lien claimant if the improper lien prevented a sale of the aircraft or forced the aircraft owner to accept less in a sale than he or she would have in the absence of a lien.

As a practical matter, a lien claimant does not foreclose on its lien as often as you might think. Oftentimes, the aircraft has a mortgage that takes priority over the lien claimant's claim. As a result, even if the lien claimant succeeded in his or her foreclosure action, the lien claimant would still have to deal with or pay off the lender who holds the mortgage.

In most cases, this doesn't make financial sense for the lien claimant and the lien claimant does not intend to foreclose on its lien. Rather, the lien claimant records the lien with the hope that the aircraft will be sold in the future and the lien claimant will receive some payment in exchange for a release of its mechanic's lien.

The Declaratory Judgment Action
.  In situations where the lien claimant does not initiate a foreclosure action, an aircraft owner may file a declaratory judgment action to ask the court to determine the validity of the lien. The aircraft owner would raise the same defenses to the lien as in a foreclosure action and would be able to assert any additional claims the aircraft owner may have against the lien claimant (e.g. slander of title). The opportunity for the aircraft owner to post a bond or deposit with the court in order to obtain a discharge or release is also available in a declaratory judgment action. The only real difference from the foreclosure action is that the aircraft owner is initiating the lawsuit rather than the lien claimant.

Conclusion


Once a lien is asserted against an aircraft, an aircraft owner isn't without options. Unfortunately, each of the options available to an aircraft owner has a cost, both in time and money. If you find yourself in this situation, I recommend that you contact an aviation attorney familiar with your state's aircraft mechanic lien laws to analyze your situation and help you choose the best course of action.

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Greg Reigel

EASA's First Executive Director Honored with 2013 European Business Aviation Award

by GlobalAir.com 21. May 2013 15:15
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Patrick Goudou Lauded for Collaboration with Industry in Setting Aviation Policies

Contacts: Dan Hubbard, (202) 783-9360, dhubbard@nbaa.org
Ana Baptista, EBAA, +32 2 766 00 73, abaptista@ebaa.org


Geneva, Switzerland, May 21, 2013 – The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) and National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) announced today that Patrick Goudou, who has served as the executive director for the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) since its establishment in 2003, has been honored with the 2013 European Business Aviation Award.

The award was presented during a May 21 luncheon on the first day of the 13th annual European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE2013), the only European exhibition focusing solely on business aviation. In presenting the award, EBAA Chairman Rodolfo Baviera lauded Goudou’s work in establishing EASA as an aviation rulemaking authority, as well as for his collaboration with the business aviation community in determining aviation policy.

“Thanks in large part to Patrick's work, it is well understood at EASA that effective regulations are those that have been informed through input from industry stakeholders, who have a first-hand understanding of what business aviation operations look like on a day-to-day basis,” Baviera said. “Not only has his collaborative approach been successful in the formation of effective business aviation safety regulations; it has also been successful in setting the tone for how EASA, as an agency, approaches its policymaking work with the business aviation community – one example being the recognition that business aviation needs different flight-and duty time rules from airline operations.”

Goudou's extensive background in the aerospace industry includes a 22-year career with the French General Delegation for Armaments (Delegation Generale pour l'Armement - DGA). Prior to joining EASA, Goudou served as chief executive of the French Aeronautical Maintenance Agency (Service de la maintenance aeronautique - SMA), where he oversaw that organization's responsibilities for engineering, maintenance and repairs to aircraft, engines and aircraft equipment, as well as for the design and production of aeronautical parts.

“Patrick came to EASA with a long-standing aviation background, which is a good thing, because he certainly needed that solid foundation to build an entire agency from the ground up,” Baviera added. “In spite of the countless priorities that would confront anyone trying to stand up a whole new agency, Patrick always had an open door to the business aviation community.”

Goudou will step down from his position at the end of August. He will be succeeded by Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) Joint Undertaking Executive Director Patrick Ky.

The annual European Business Aviation Awards have been given since the inception of EBACE in 2001. Past recipients are as follows (titles and affiliations shown were current at time of award presentation):

• David McMillan, director general of Eurocontrol, and Don Spruston, director general of the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) (2012).
• Peter Lonergan, former Biggin Hill Airport director, and Richard Gaona, Comlux Aviation Group president (2011).
• Elie Zelouf, senior vice president of Jet Aviation, and officials at Aéroports de Paris (2010).
• Marwan Khalek, CEO and co-founder of Gama Aviation Limited, and Lyon-Bron Business Airport (2009).
• Mark Booth, chairman and CEO of NetJets Europe (2008).
• Judith Moreton, Bombardier Skyjet International, and Mark Wilson, British Business and General Aviation Association (2007).
• Geneva PALEXPO and Flight Safety International (2006).
• TAG Aviation and Cannes/Mandelieu Airport (2005).
• Jean-Francois Georges, Dassault Aviation, and Fernand Francois, European Business Aviation Association (2004).
• Ahid Quntar, Royal Wings/Arab Wings, and Andrew Walters, Regional Airports Ltd. (2003).
• Richard Gooding, London City Airport, and Jean-Pierre Jobin, Geneva International Airport (2002).
• Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, LEGO, and Frederik Sørensen, Head of Unit, European Commission (2001).
For more information on EBACE2013, visit www.ebace.aero/2013.

# # #

About EBAA: The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) was founded in 1977 to defend the interests of business aviation. Today, more than 500 business aviation companies (direct members or members of associate organizations) rely on the EBAA to protect their business interests. It is the only voice to represent business aviation among the European institutions. For more information, visit www.ebaa.org.

About NBAA: Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The Association represents more than 9,000 companies and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, the world's largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at www.nbaa.org.

Newest Tecnam LSA, the Astore, Features Levil “Six-Pack”

by GlobalAir.com 17. May 2013 15:49
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The Levil AHRS G-mini is, for the first time, now listed on the avionics callout of an LSA aircraft. The newest TECNAM aircraft, the head-turning Astore, has an iPad mini as standard equipment with the option to have the Levil Aviation G-mini – AW providing the "six pack" information wirelessly to the iPad’s display.

The Levil AHRS solves the problem of instability issues often found when using the internal gyros of the iPad to simulate attitude indication in the air. Levil instruments go through extensive calibration procedures and provide uncontested performance over a wide range of aircraft dynamics. “Sometimes people are skeptical about using an iPad in the cockpit because it is not a dedicated aircraft instrument. However, when used as a high-resolution display for a dedicated aircraft instrument like the G-mini, it becomes the most revolutionary and flexible system in aviation today. TECNAM realized this when testing our products and we are excited to work with them.” said Ananda Leon, Systems Engineer at Levil Technology.

The Levil G-mini has been catching on since its introduction at AirVenture 2011 and is popular in GA aircraft with traditional “steam gauges” which are using the iPad for situational awareness, all the way to experimental aircraft that use the Apple devices as a PFD.

Most applications used with iPad mini + LEVIL include “zero-drift” technology, and display most of the information found on a traditional EFIS, including pressure altitude, indicated airspeed and vertical speed from the pitot-static system. When combined with apps such as WingX Pro7 and AirNav Pro, the pilot has access to additional features such as 3D Synthetic Vision and Terrain Awareness. “The G-mini is a great addition to our avionics selection and the perfect match for such a sophisticated and beautiful aircraft,” said Fabio Russo, Chief of Product Development at TECNAM.

TECNAM’s new Astore will be showcased at AirVenture 2013 with Levil’s AHRS installed.

More (Levil): www.aviation.levil.com/AHRS_mini.htm
More (Astore): www.tecnam.co.nz/astore.html

Contact:
Ananda Leon (anandaleon@levil.com)
Systems Engineer
Research and Development
Levil Technology/Levil Aviation
1704 Kennedy Point, Suite 1124
Oviedo, Florida 32765
Phone / fax: 407-542-3971

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Embraer Executive Jets to Debut Legacy 500 Prototype at EBACE

by GlobalAir.com 15. May 2013 09:58
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The company will also debut the 2013 Edition of its ultra-large Lineage 1000. The entry-level Phenom 100, the Phenom 300 light jet and the large Legacy 650 will be featured in the static display.

EBACE, Europe’s premier business aviation gathering, is an excellent showcase to debut the Legacy 500 and the 2013 Lineage 1000,” said Ernest Edwards, President, Embraer Executive Jets. “As with the Phenom 100 and the Phenom 300 before it, the Legacy 500 is recognized as a game changer in its category. It is the first midsize jet with full fly-by-wire technology for complete envelope protection and improved comfort, efficiency and reduced pilot workload resulting in even more safety. In addition, we are also bringing our new 2013 Edition of the Lineage 1000, featuring an enhanced interior, refined exterior appearance and our Enhanced Vision System EVS.”

Journalists are welcome at the Embraer Booth - number 7041, Hall 7. News media are also invited to the Embraer Executive Jets Press Conference which will be held on Monday, May 20, in Room 1, Hall 7, at 10:00 am.

The Legacy 500 is the first midsize clean-sheet design in 15 years and is the recipient of international design and innovation awards. The Legacy 500 is the first midsize jet with a six-foot (1.82 meters), stand-up cabin, offering the best cabin volume in the class. It is the only midsize jet with a wet galley. It offers the best high-speed cruise and the best cabin pressurization at 6,000 feet to ease jet lag.

The Embraer Executive Jets family recently marked new milestones, culminating with the first flights of the three Legacy 500 prototypes, the delivery of the 200th aircraft from the Legacy family and the transition of its Harbin, China industrial facility to the production of the Legacy 600 and Legacy 650, the first of which is expected to be delivered in the fourth quarter. It also recently delivered the first NetJets Signature SeriesTM Phenom 300.

For more information about Embraer Executive Jets, see EmbraerExecutiveJets.com.

North America
Robert Stangarone - E: rstangarone[.]embraer.com.
Cell: +1 954 260 9939 / T: +1 954 359 3101 / F: +1 954 359 4755

Europe, Middle East and Africa
Hervé Tilloy - E: herve.tilloy[.]embraer.fr.
Cell: +33(0)6 08 64 35 45 / T: +33(0)1 49 38 45 30 / F: +33(0)1 49 38 44 56

China
Mirage Zhong - E: mirage.zhong[.]bjs.embraer.com.
Cell: +86 138 1191 8053 / T: +86 10 6598 9988 / F: +86 10 6598 9986

Asia Pacific
Shorbani Roy - E: shorbani.roy[.]sin.embraer.com.
Cell: +65 9794 2401 / T: +65 6305 9955 / F: +65 6734 8255.

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GlobalAir.com | News | Press Release

Learjet 75 Aircraft Set for World Debut at EBACE 2013

by GlobalAir.com 13. May 2013 10:33
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MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - May 10, 2013) -

Bombardier Aerospace announced today that just one year after launching the Learjet 70 and Learjet 75 aircraft, it is returning to this year's edition of EBACE with the first production Learjet 75 jet. Alongside the debutante will be three additional class-leading jets.

The Challenger 300, Challenger 605 and Global 6000 aircraft will all be on display from May 21 - May 23, 2013 in Geneva, Switzerland at the 13th European Business Aviation Conference and Exhibition.

"This year's edition of EBACE will once again highlight Bombardier's leadership in the industry," said Steve Ridolfi, President, Bombardier Business Aircraft. "The debut of the Learjet 75 aircraft marks another exciting year of innovation and we look forward to delivering the first aircraft in the fourth quarter of this year."

Growing Support Network to Put Customers First

Bombardier Customer Services team members will be on hand to highlight the continuing growth of its comprehensive support network. Within the past year, the team has converted its Frankfurt parts depot to a full-service hub to accommodate a wider range of parts transactions, opened a business aircraft-focused Regional Support Office in Farnborough, U.K. and continued to drive greater volume and capabilities at its wholly owned Service Centre in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Bombardier Aircraft on Static Display at EBACE 2013

Learjet 75 aircraft: The Learjet 75 jet features the pioneering Bombardier Vision Flight Deck with an interior influenced from its bigger stablemate, the Learjet 85 aircraft. This jet will soar above the traffic with a maximum altitude of 51,000 ft (15,545 m) and is capable of flying more than 2,000nm (3,704km)(i) between Geneva and Cairo non-stop(i).

Challenger 300 aircraft: The dependable Challenger 300 jet offers true transcontinental range and superior long-range cruise speed, with eight-to-10 passengers. Its 3,065nm (5,646km) range connects Geneva with Dubai non-stop and NBAA IFR reserves. Its superior airfield performance allows it to operate out of 5,000 ft (1,524 m) runways with ease(i). The Challenger 300 jet offers the best performance and value in its class, combined with a dispatch reliability that has consistently been above 99.7 per cent, it has exceeded customer expectations since its entry-into-service in 2004.

Challenger 605 aircraft: The revered Challenger 605 jet builds upon the legacy of productivity, quality and reliability of its predecessor, the peerless Challenger 604 jet. Leading its market share segment throughout the world, the Challenger 605 aircraft features one of the widest stand-up cabins of any large category business jet available today and can soar six passengers 4,000 nm (7,408 km) from Geneva to Montreal(i).

Global 6000 aircraft: The Global 6000 jet's large cabin size and levels of comfort, combined with an optional stand-up shower and the Bombardier Vision Flight Deck, offers a perfect blend of high-speed range capability and traveller comfort. Offering the ultimate in technology, this intrepid jet can link Geneva with Tokyo and Geneva with Sao Paulo, non-stop, with eight passengers and three to four crew aboard(i).

Confirmed Media Activities

Monday, May 20, 2013, 11:00 - 12:00
Bombardier Business Aircraft Press Conference
Hall 7 - Bombardier Booth #7011

Tuesday, May 21, 2013, 10:00 - 11:00
Bombardier Business Aircraft Press Conference
Hall 7 - Bombardier Booth #7011

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 16:30 - 18:30
Customer Services Cocktail
Hall 7 - Bombardier Booth #7011


About Bombardier
Bombardier is the world's only manufacturer of both planes and trains. Looking far ahead while delivering today, Bombardier is evolving mobility worldwide by answering the call for more efficient, sustainable and enjoyable transportation everywhere. Our vehicles, services and, most of all, our employees are what make us a global leader in transportation.

Bombardier is headquartered in Montreal, Canada. Our shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (BBD) and we are listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability World and North America Indexes. In the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012, we posted revenues of $16.8 billion. News and information are available at bombardier.com or follow us on Twitter @Bombardier.

Notes to editors
Follow @Bombardier_Aero on Twitter to receive the latest news and updates from Bombardier Aerospace.

(i)Under certain operating conditions.

Bombardier, Bombardier Vision, Challenger, Challenger 300, Challenger 604, Challenger 605, Global, Global 6000, Learjet, Learjet 70, Learjet 75, and The Evolution of Mobility are trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.

To view the photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/BBD-Learjet75.jpg.

CONTACT INFORMATION:
Annie Cossette Bombardier Business Aircraft
+1-514-855-4388
annie.cossette@aero.bombardier.com
Virtual press kit: www.bbapress.com
www.bombardier.com

 

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