How to Make Your Legal Fees as High as Possible!

By: Lapayowker Jet Counsel

September 18, 2018

Buying an aircraft is usually expensive enough, but in our experience there are some key things that can push legal fees higher than expected. Most are behaviors that can be avoided with the proper gameplan at the inception of the transaction.
1. Advisors, representatives and others involved go outside their “swim lanes.”
We see this with even the most sophisticated team of advisors. Usually, even though experienced aviation counsel is involved, an advisor will interact with the escrow agent or the lender without coordinating with counsel, or perhaps even circulate legal documents that they have prepared. The result is time spent “unscrambling the egg.”     
2. Sign a letter of intent without review and expect to change the deal later.
Even when they state that they are “non-binding,” letters of intent (or offers to purchase) are legal documents which, if not worded properly, can lead you to set expectations in the mind of the other party that, when reviewed by experienced advisors, could require change and disappointment.  For example, can the aircraft be rejected after the inspection? Or can it only be rejected for serious issues? Or can it not be rejected at all?  Does the letter of intent expire if a purchase agreement is not executed within a certain period of time, or is it silent? When counsel is only involved after signing the LOI, negotiations can become more time consuming.
3. Use representatives that do not understand the value of other professionals in the transaction.
When representatives and counsel work together as a team, each having an understanding of his or her respective role, the transaction typically proceeds efficiently and smoothly. If the opposite is true, alot of time can be spent by all participants in a struggle for control.