Jerry Skinner

Of Counsel


Jerry Skinner is an aviation attorney with unparalleled experience representing families of victims of international commercial air crash disasters and general aviation accidents and helicopter crashes. He is one of only two American lawyers ever to appear before the Egyptian Court of Cassation. Jerry is most proud of his ongoing work for a charity that he founded in 1998 for disabled children. The Romanian Handicapped Ministry is a non-profit Christian ministry that focuses on assisting young people with serious disabilities in Romania. Due to his unique aviation expertise and experience he is often a part of the steering committee on major airplane crash disasters. His representative cases include:

  • Air Crash Disaster at Covington, Kentucky, Air Canada Fire
  • Air Crash Disaster at Gander, Newfoundland on December 12, 1988, Arrow
  • Air Crash Disaster in Lockerbie, Scotland, December 22, 1988
  • Pan Am Flight 103 Bombing, Plaintiff’s Steering Committee, Libyan Litigation
  • Air Crash Disaster on July 19, 1989 at Sioux City, Iowa, United Airlines Flight 232
  • Air Crash Disaster at Detroit, Michigan on August 16, 1987, Northwest Airlines flight 255, Member of Plaintiff’s Reconstituted Steering Committee
  • Air Crash at LaGuardia International Airport, US Air Flight 405, March 22, 1992, Trial Team
  • Air Crash Disaster at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, September 8, 1994, US Air Flight 427
  • Air Crash Disaster at Dubrovnik Airport, Croatia, On April 3, 1996, USAF CT-43, Plaintiff’s Steering Committee
  • Air Crash Disaster at New York, New York on July 17, 1996, TWA Flight 800, Plaintiff’s Steering Committee (Center Wing Fuel Tank Explosion)
  • Air Crash Disaster at Monroe, Michigan on January 9, 1997, Comair Flight 3272
  • Air Crash Disaster at Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia, on September 2, 1998, Swissair Flight 111, (On-board fire) Plaintiff’s Steering Committee
  • Air Crash Disaster near Nantucket Island on October 31, 2000, Egypt Air Flight 990, (Deliberate act of suicide) Plaintiff’s Executive Committee and Plaintiff’s Liaison Counsel
  • In RE: Cessna 208B Aircraft Products Liability Litigation, MDL 1721, USDC for the District of Kansas, Plaintiff’s Liaison/Lead Counsel, 2005-2008
  • Malaysia Air Flight 370, March 8, 2014 in the Java Sea, South Asia
  • Malaysia Air Flight 17, July 7, 2014 near Donetsk, Ukraine, attacked and destroyed by missile

In 2004, Jerry acted as a member of the negotiating committee that reached a historic $2.7 billion dollar settlement with the State of Libya on behalf of the 270 victims’ families in the litigation arising out of the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing.

In 2006, Jerry worked to create an alternative dispute resolution process for the families of the Egyptian citizens who were victims of the October 1999 mid-Atlantic crash of Egypt Air flight 990. Jerry presented cases before a former Egyptian United Nations diplomat appointed as special master, appearing in the highest court in Egypt, the Court of Cassation.

In addition to representing families of the MH17 crash victims against Malaysian Airlines for damages under the Montreal Convention, Jerry Skinner is leading the litigation filed in the European Court of Human Rights, (“ECHR”) in Strasbourg, France. The claim alleges that the Russian Federation fired a Buk-M1 anti-aircraft missile from within the Ukraine and shot down a commercial airliner, a Boeing 777 operating as Malaysian Airlines Systems flight 17, killing all 298 non-combatant passengers and crew on board. This act of war violated the European Human Rights Convention, of which Russia is a signatory, in denying the passengers and crew the right to life and the freedom from torture. This action is entitled, Sharlene Ayley and others v. the Russian Federation, Case No. 25714/16. For more information on this case, click here.

Jerry is of counsel at Friedman | Rubin, with special status as agent and representative of the firm.

To contact Jerry, you can email him at

Presentations & Publications

2014-2016, Adjunct Faculty, Ohio Northern University, Pettit College of Law, Seminar in Complex Litigation

2009, SMU Air Law Symposium, Journal of Air Law and Commerce, Egypt Air 990: Down the Rabbit Hole

2008, Duke University, review of Pan Am 103 Libyan Case

2004, SMU Air Law Symposium, Journal of Air Law and Commerce, An American Civil Law Response to International Terror

SMU Air Law Symposium, Journal of Air Law and Commerce, The Family Assistance Act of 1996: Plugging Some Holes and Finding Some Fairness in the Solicitation of Clients etc.

Honors & Memberships

Super Lawyer – 2011, 2012, 2016
Washington Law & Politics Magazine

Hall of Fame 2013 as Lawyer and Humanitarian
Brocton Central School

AV Rated 1997-2017

Outstanding Alumnus 2013
SUNY College at Fredonia, NY

Honorary Doctor of Laws, May 2009
Ohio Northern University, Pettit College of Law

Court Memberships

Ohio State Bar, November 1979

USDC So. District of Ohio, December 1979

USDC Eastern District of Ky., July 1980

USCA for the Sixth Circuit, September 1982

United States Supreme Court, April 1986

USDC Eastern District of Michigan, December 1988

USDC, Northern District of Ohio, October 1992

USDC Southern District of Indiana. December 1992

USDC Northern District of Illinois, March 2005

USDC District of Colorado, November 2005

USDC Western District of Michigan, July 2006

European Court of Human Rights 2016

MDL Case Steering Committee and Liaison Counsel Appointments

Northwest 255, USDC Eastern District of Michigan

Pan Am 103, Eastern District of NY

Swiss Air Flight 111, Eastern District of Pennsylvania

USAF CT-43, Near Dubrovnik, Croatia, District of Connecticut

Egypt Air 990 Steering Committee and Plaintiff’s Liaison Counsel, Eastern District of NY

IN RE: Cessna Caravan 208B Products Liability Action, District of Kansas, Lead Counsel and Plaintiff’s Liaison Counsel


Ohio Northern University Petit College of Law J.D., 1979

SUNY College at Fredonia, NY