Richard Smith

Partner, Los Angeles


“Richard Smith’s long experience in the aviation finance arena has enabled him to build a broad practice with expertise in a range of matters, including Islamic financings and Japanese operating and leverage leases.”
Chambers USA 2014


Richard supports clients operating in the aircraft and transport sectors with an array of complex transactions, often involving equipment finance and leasing. He offers the benefit of his extensive experience in this area, which spans more than 30 years. He has a significant track record of representing and advising lessors, lessees, lenders, intermediaries and equity interests in a variety of equipment leasing and finance transactions involving aircraft (commercial and corporate), vessels, railroad rolling stock, telecommunications equipment and buses. Adept at helping clients to navigate the legal complexities of intricately structured, multijurisdictional deals, his broad transactional experience covers portfolio securitizations, portfolio acquisitions and sales, operating leases, debt financings, cross-border leverage leases, Japanese operating and leverage leases and Islamic financings. Richard also has considerable experience of aircraft leasing and finance deals, as well as airline restructurings and bankruptcies. He recently acted for management in a management buyout of a major aircraft lessor. At ease with the international dimension inherent in many aircraft transactions, Richard has helped clients operating in this sector to execute deals both within the United States and in territories across the globe, from Europe and Asia to South America.
Bars and Courts
California State Bar
US District Court for the Central District of California
University of Illinois
University of Illinois


Awards and Recognition

Band 2: Transportation: Aviation: Finance 
Chambers USA 2020

Recommended Lawyer: Equipment Finance Law 
US News — Best Lawyers 2006 -2020