Our Team

Catherine ERKELENS

Founder

Since January 2017, Catherine Erkelens has founded the Aviation niche firm Erkelens Law.

She brings to the firm an experience of over 20 years working for the Aviation sector. As from 2003 until 2016, Catherine has been the co-head of an international firm’s international Aviation Group. She has developed a strong client base and leading reputation working for companies operating in or dealing with the Aviation & Aerospace sector, and was responsible for several landmark litigations with international impact.

Her experience includes regulatory, commercial and contentious advice in relation to airport economic regulation, airport charges, groundhandling, slot regulation, air traffic control, privatization of airports and ATM, security and safety, as well as the relationship between airlines, airports and other stakeholders, and the use of new technologies in the Aviation and Aerospace sectors. Catherine led a.o. the “Zaventem tax case” on airport charges, and other litigation related to: security charges, passenger service charges, the use of airport infrastructure, the liberalisation of the groundhandling market, air traffic control, commission for travel agents. She represents and assists airlines, airline associations, groundhandling service providers, airport services providers, airports, governmental bodies, technology service providers, communications services providers. Catherine also has in depth knowledge of Data Protection regulation and has worked on several Technology projects.

She is a member of the International Aviation Women’s Association, the European Aviation Club and the European Air Law Association. Erkelens Law is also an Associate Member of A4E.

Catherine’s Aviation practice has been top-tier ranked by EMEA LEGAL 500 since 2005.

Catherine was awarded the “Client Choice” Award 2018 for Aviation, Belgium.

Before that, she has been awarded the same “Client Choice” Award in 2017, and in 2016. Catherine also was awarded “Best in Aviation” by Euromoney’s European Women in Business Law in 2015, and before that in 2014. Erkelens Law also is a Global Awards winner 2018, awarded “Aviation Law Firm of the Year in Belgium”, by CorporateINTL.

Marie BRESSON

Avocat | Paris

The firm collaborates in Paris with Marie Bresson.

Marie Bresson has worked in international law firms for 15 years. She has developed in-depth experience in Aviation law and transport law more generally. Marie is a skilled litigator. Her litigation experience involves insurance law, industrial risk and international private law. She has handled litigation cases in relation to: aircraft accidents (ex.: the Concorde in 2000, Air France Rio-Paris AF447 in 2009 and the Cork landing accident in 2011), issues of maintenance or groundhandling, passenger claims, aircraft and engines repossession. She also assists air carriers and various operators in France with multiple regulatory questions.

Marie also handled matters in other industrial sectors (e.g.: burning of the “la Manche” tunnel, collapse of cranes and claims in the automotive sector), construction and commercial matters. She assisted clients in relation to the recall of consumer goods (toys, construction material, electronics.)


Yasmin BHATTI

Associate

Yasmin advises and represents clients on a wide range of legal issues relating to the Aviation sector, including commercial, regulatory and passenger rights issues.

Yasmin qualified with the Brussels bar in 2014 and from 2014 to 2016 was an associate in the Aviation practice of an international law firm, where she was already part of the team of Catherine Erkelens.

She obtained an LL.M. in Air and Space law from the University of Leiden where she focused on public air law, private air law, and space law from both an international and EU perspective. She wrote her master’s dissertation on the legal issues relating to unruly passengers. She drafted the chapter on Belgium in the Leiden University’s book on Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems, edition 2016.

Yasmin is a regular speaker at conferences related to drones where she deals with the related legislative initiatives, both at national level and at EU level.

Yasmin obtained her Master in Law from the University of Leuven in 2013 where she majored in EU and International Law.

Yasmin is a member of the European Air Law Association.

Kim VERHAEGHE

Associate

Kim is an Aviation lawyer. He advises clients in the Aviation sector on commercial and regulatory issues and is involved with Aviation litigation matters.

He has a particular focus on Aviation product liability as well as on Air Traffic Control, and has an activity in space law as well.

Kim obtained an LL.M. in Air and Space law from the University of Leiden where he focused on public air law, private air law, and space law from both an international and EU perspective. He wrote his master’s dissertation on air traffic rights designation procedures.

He obtained his Master of law at the University of Leuven where he majored in EU and international law.

Kim is a member of the European Air Law Association (EALA) and the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS).

Stéphane DE SCHUTTER

Associate

Stéphane specialises in EU Regulatory matters, including Data Protection law.

He obtained his Master in Law from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in 2016, where he majored in EU and International Law. Stéphane wrote his master’s dissertation on the international legality of the economic sanctions applied by the EU against Russia.

He obtained a post graduate degree in Sports Management prior to qualifying with the Brussels Bar in 2018.
Stéphane has been nominated by the Bar to co-represent it in the ERA-CCBE Young Lawyers Contest for EU Law in Trier on 6-7 September 2018.