Barth, Christopher R.

Christopher R. Barth

Partner
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Christopher Barth is a recognized leading attorney in aviation and insurance law. In his over 25 years of providing legal services, Chris is recognized as a top lawyer in representing insurers across a broad spectrum of commercial lines of insurance. In addition, Chris counsels clients on general corporate matters, including contract drafting and application, regulatory compliance and employment-related issues.

Christopher Barth is a recognized leading attorney in aviation and insurance law. In his over 25 years of providing legal services, Chris is recognized as a top lawyer in representing insurers across a broad spectrum of commercial lines of insurance. In addition, Chris counsels clients on general corporate matters, including contract drafting and application, regulatory compliance and employment-related issues.

Insurance Coverage Counseling and Litigation

Chris has wide-ranging experience in representing insurers' interests in coverage matters involving claims for:

  • COVID-19
  • Sexual abuse
  • Workers compensation
  • Aviation
  • Environmental pollution
  • Asbestos
  • Radiation
  • Construction defects
  • Intentional torts
  • Native American treaty rights qui tam

Chris has consulted with insurers about the impacts of evolving technologies on the insurance industry, especially the rise and risks associated with Blockchain technology.

Chris gained a unique insight into the aviation underwriting and claims process during separate one-month externships with a Syndicate in Lloyd's of London and at Swiss Reinsurance Company in Zurich, Switzerland. During both programs, Chris provided client counseling and observed all aspects of the underwriting and claims process. He also makes frequent presentations to insurers on various topics of interest.

Corporate Experience

Chris counsels various corporate clients across a broad range of issues. He has worked with a large consumer products client to address independent contractor agreements, employment status considerations, misclassification claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act and maintenance of customer credit card information. Chris has worked with a leading food company on issues relating to compliance with the California Transparency in Supply Chain Act and customer privacy issues. He represents corporate clients in responding to environmental regulatory enforcement matters. He is routinely retained to provide advice on corporate contracts, including equipment leases.

Chris is an accomplished public speaker on topics of interest in the aviation area. He is routinely invited to speak at conferences throughout the United States, Europe and South America. Chris has spoken on such topics as cyber risks facing airport operators, recent developments affecting the aircraft leasing industry, U.S. jurisdictional issues to non-U.S. audiences, technological advances in aviation and the associated legal implications and insurance coverage issues for airlines, airports, lessors and manufacturers

Chris’ aviation experience also includes defense of:

  • Aircraft manufacturers
  • Air carriers and airline consortiums
  • Aircraft lessors and financiers
  • Airports and municipalities
  • Charter operators
  • MROs and security companies against allegations covering a wide spectrum of issues, including wrongful death
  • Faulty workmanship
  • Breach of bailment
  • Negligent entrustment

Chris’ work also includes serving as lead counsel to foreign and domestic insurers in high-exposure, multi-party coverage litigation. He has appeared as counsel of record in federal and state courts in 27 different U.S. jurisdictions and has been co-counsel in matters pending in three Canadian provinces. Chris served as an expert on the General Aviation Revitalization Act in a matter pending in the Ontario Provincial court.

Aviation Litigation Experience With Major Losses

Chris has represented airlines, airframe and component manufacturers or lessor and suppliers in connection with the following major losses:

  • November 29, 2013 LAM Mozambique near Bwabwata National Park, &Namibia
  • July 28, 2010 Airblue A321 near Islamabad, Pakistan
  • June 30, 2009 Yemenia A310 near Moroni, Comoros
  • August 20, 2008 Spanair MD-82 at Madrid, Spain
  • March 10, 2008 Adam Air B737 at Batam, Indonesia
  • January 1, 2007 Adam Air B737 near Sulawesi, Indonesia
  • May 7, 2005 Transair Fairchild FA227 near Lockhart River, Queensland, Australia
  • January 3, 2004 Flash Airlines B737 into the Red Sea
  • May 25, 2002 China Airlines B747 into the Taiwan Straits
  • July 25, 2000 Air France Concorde near Gonesse, France
  • April 19, 2000 Air Philippines B737 at Daveo City, Philippines
  • June 18, 1998 Propair Fairchild FA226 at Mirabel Airport, Montreal, Québec
  • September 8, 1994 U.S. Air B737 near Pittsburgh

Chris' experience includes handling cross-border matters involving aviation losses in Canada resulting in competing Canadian and U.S. litigation. His experience in these matters includes representing charter operators, a major landing gear manufacturer and a U.S.-based parts manufacturer.

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CREDENTIALS
Education
  • J.D., DePaul University College of Law, 1991
  • B.B.A., University of Iowa, 1988
Bar Admissions
  • Illinois, 1991
Court Admissions
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, 1991
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois Trial Bar, 1995
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois, 2001
Professional Affiliations
    • Member, Illinois State Bar Association
    • Member, Kane County Bar Association
    • Member, Aviation Insurance Association
Awards & Recognitions
    • Named, The Best Lawyers in America®, Insurance Law (2016-2021)
    • Recognized, Illinois Super Lawyers® (2011-2020)