In-house v. Outside Counsel: Best of both worlds

Lisette Leuftink, Corporate Legal Counsel, Transavia Airlines C.V., Netherlands

Gone are the days when in-house counsels send out all relevant cases to just one outside counsel, with whom it had a good and solid relationship built over years and years of cooperation. These days, in-house counsels have become more efficient and systematic when it comes to hiring outside counsels. ‘All bills will be paid without hesitation’ isn’t standard practice anymore. On the contrary, the costs for the services rendered have become one of the criteria for selecting outside counsels. Times have changed and so has the role of both the in-house counsel and the outside counsel. After years of experience as an outside counsel at a law firm in Amsterdam, with a specialization in corporate and insolvency law, I changed jobs and joined Transavia Airlines (“Transavia”) at Schiphol Airport as corporate legal counsel. Even though the basis of both jobs consists of being a legal consultant for a company, the role of an in-house counsel is very different from the role of an outside counsel. In this paper I will set out how I experienced these differences and in general the recent developments in both roles. And what are the consequences for the cooperation between the outside and in-house counsels and their teams? Furthermore I will discuss a recent development in EU legislation on air passenger rights, how this affects the EU aviation industry and why in this case a solid cooperation with an outstanding outside counsel is of paramount value.

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Netherlands Management Aviation November 2012 Vol. 6, No. 21, Autumn 2012

Lisette Leuftink

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Lisette Leuftink graduated from Leiden University with a Masters degree in Business Law. She worked as an attorney-at-law for a law firm in Amsterdam and was specialized in corporate and insolvency law. She was frequently appointed by the court of Amsterdam as trustee in different bankruptcies. In January 2012 Lisette joined Transavia as corporate legal counsel. You can reach her at lisette.leuftink@transavia.com or via LinkedIn.

Transavia Airlines C.V.

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Transavia Airlines C.V. (with brand name transavia.com) is a Dutch low cost airline that offers charter flights and scheduled flights to summer and winter holiday destinations around Europe and to the Mediterranean. Transavia is market leader in holiday air travel in the Netherlands. Its clients consist of tour operators, that have their own internet portals available to them, as well as final consumers with whom Transavia communicates through its up-to-date website. Transavia was founded in 1965 as Transavia Holland. Since 2003 Transavia is a wholly owned subsidiary of KLM, member of the AIR FRANCE KLM Group. Within the AIR FRANCE KLM Group, Transavia operates as an independent member. Transavia Airlines C.V. holds a 40% interest in the French airline company Transavia France S.A.S (the remaining 60% are owned by Air France S.A.), which operates in the French market. Transavia France operates under the brand name of transavia.com, with an identical business model, website and image.

Netherlands Management Aviation November 2012 Vol. 6, No. 21, Autumn 2012
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