Laura M. Safran, Q.C., is a senior partner in the firm's Calgary office and specializes in the areas of corporate/commercial, intellectual property and technology law. She also is the head of Davis LLP's national Aviation Law Practice Group, and co-head of the Davis LLP national Education Law Practice Group.
Laura acts for national and international corporations, major institutions and government entities in respect of a wide variety of commercial and corporate transactions, including asset and share sales, asset leasing, asset-based financings, partnerships, joint ventures, corporate governance, outsourcing transactions and restructurings.
Laura has led significant mergers and acquisitions transactions on national and international levels. She also represents public sector clients in the education and health fields and has worked on a variety of public-private infrastructure transactions. Laura's practice also includes significant intellectual property and information technology related transactions. She has many years' experience in the education law field and recently acted as Acting General Counsel of a major public school board and is general corporate counsel to a well known post-secondary polytechnical training institute.
Laura held the position of Vice-President, Law and Corporate Secretary of Canadian Airlines International for a number of years. Since returning to private practice, she has represented a wide variety of aviation-industry clients with respect to new and used aircraft acquisitions, dispositions, leases and financings, airline operational and safety matters, aviation regulatory issues, aviation claims work, airport related matters and international air law matters.
Laura completed the update to the Canadian Encyclopedia Digest (4th ed.) on Aviation (Carswell), the first update since 1998 and also provides the sole annual Canadian updates to Getting the Deal Through - Air Transport and The Aviation Law Review. She has also spoken widely on aviation law issues, including at the International Air & Space Law Symposium held in Beijing by the China University of Political Science & Law and was a Sessional Lecturer in Aviation Law at the University of Calgary Faculty of Law for many years.
Laura is consistently noted as a leading lawyer by all of the noteworthy legal directories including Canadian Legal, Lexpert, Best Lawyers in Canada, Who's Who Legal, Guide to the World's Leading Women in Business Law, Guide to the Worlds’ Leading Aviation Lawyers and Expert Guides: The Best of the Best (Aviation). She has been named one of Canada's Most Powerful Women (2004) in the Globe & Mail, as well as one of the Leading Women Lawyers in Canada (2009) by Lexpert. Chambers Global ranks Laura in Band 1 for transporation law: Aviation.
Laura is a member of the Law Societies of Alberta and British Columbia. She is a member of the Boards of Directors of the Calgary International Airport Authority, The Van Horne Institute and the Van Horne Foundation and was appointed by the Minister of Transport to the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada as a part-time member.
- Lead counsel to major Canadian polytechnical training institution and lead outside counsel (and former Acting General Counsel) for The Calgary Board of Education. Counsel to a number of other Canadian post-secondary learning institutes.
- Handles domestic, international and transborder sales, leases and financings of aircraft and helicopters for various sellers, buyers, lessees, lessors and financiers, including fractional aircraft transactions.
- Represents foreign air carriers and Canadian air carriers operating on scheduled or charter basis, including on seasonal basis, in respect of licensing, certification and other Canadian aviation regulatory matters. Handles aircraft maintenance work, represents aviation insurance syndicates in regard to claims, counsel to government in respect of major airline refinancing, handles airport related issues and airline operational agreements.
- Counsel to various clients on a variety of national and international transactions involving mergers and acquisitions, including lead Canadian counsel on sale of major midstream Canadian oil company to U.S. private equity interest.
- Commercial counsel to partnership structure in respect of tax structured transactions involving oil and mining production in Canada.
- Handles a variety of intellectual property and electronic media transactions, including software licensing and sales, domain name issues, copyright and trademarks issues and privacy issues.
- Handles a variety of commercial law matters representing public and private companies and other entities in many industries.
- Past experience as commercial counsel to public health authority.
- Counsel to boards of directors on governance and fiduciary issues.
- Advises on commercial real property and P3 (infrastructure) issues.