Dean Gerber, Vedder Price
LEADING LAWYER DIRECTORY – Dean Gerber, Vedder Price
Dean Gerber chairs the global transportation finance team at Vedder Price and specialises in aviation finance.
+1 312 609 7638
“Obviously, hiring knowledgeable and experienced counsel is essential to getting a deal done efficiently and at an acceptable cost. Beyond that, I preach patience, focus and reasonableness. The aviation business is full of risk and we could spend countless hours seeking to address these risks (all the while knowing that its impossible to fully eliminate risk entirely). Transactions close far more smoothly when parties are patient, assess risk properly and act reasonably to achieve mutually acceptable terms. There is simply no need to reinvent the wheel on every transaction. Rather, parties should accept market custom and recognize that doing otherwise will significantly drive up transaction costs, without necessarily any significant improvement in position.
“You should always be prepared and fully understanding and knowledgeable about the legal issues involved in the deal. Some lawyers work off a form document and have no idea why provisions are included or what they mean. This does a disservice to the client and makes negotiations extremely difficult. Further, you should always avoid drama and strive to behave in a rationale and constructive fashion. All too often lawyers on transactions seek to “win” every issue, even those points for which their client is indifferent. This drives up costs for everyone involved in the deal. In aviation finance transactions, lawyers should strive to be facilitators as well as advocates as the transaction will close far more smoothly and efficiently if the lawyers act in a cooperative fashion.”
“My background is accounting (I’m a CPA) and finance so when I graduated from law school, I was first and foremost focused on a corporate finance. I was truly fortunate that my first transaction out of law school (in 1985) was a leveraged lease financing of a new Boeing 767 aircraft. I truly enjoyed the work and I have been involved in all aspects of aviation finance since then.”
Dean N. Gerber is a Shareholder at Vedder Price and chairs the Global Transportation Finance team. He has extensive experience as special counsel representing lessees, equity participants, lenders, credit enhancers, underwriters, governmental agencies and others on various aspects of aircraft, railcar and general equipment finance, including leveraged leasing, operating leasing, mortgage and synthetic lease financings, cross-border leasing, securitizations (including EETCs and pass-through certificates), government-supported financings, manufacturer-supported financings, bankruptcies, restructurings and workouts, and purchase, maintenance and conversion agreements. He also has participated significantly in the development and structuring of financings involving export credit agencies.
Mr. Gerber, also a certified public accountant, is a frequent speaker at air finance conferences and legal forums and has authored numerous articles on equipment finance-related topics. Mr. Gerber is regularly named one of the top aviation lawyers in the world in Legal Media Group’s Expert Guides (including a listing as The Best of the Best for Aviation), and was recognized by The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers as one of the top ten most highly regarded individuals in Aviation for 2011. He was also included in the elite Leading Lawyers list for the Finance-Asset Finance and Leasing category in 2011 by Legal 500. Mr. Gerber was also highly ranked in Chambers Global in the Asset Finance category, and in 2011 he was ranked in the top tier by Chambers USA in the Nationwide Transportation: Aviation: Finance category. Mr. Gerber was selected by his peers from 2008 to 2012 for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America. He also serves on the Legal Advisory Panel for the Aviation Working Group in connection with its work on aviation-related matters, including the Cape Town Convention.