William B. Piels - Holland & Knight, LLP

William B. Piels

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2006
Phone: 415-743-6930

Mr. Piels is the executive partner for the San Francisco office of Holland & Knight LLP with over 25 years of experience in aircraft lease and financing transactions.  The clients he has represented include some of the world’s largest aircraft operating lessors and international financial institutions.  Mr. Piels has also represented major international airlines, U.S. domestic airlines, engine manufacturers, engine lessors and spare parts lessors.  He has extensive experience in a broad range of transactions in the aircraft leasing and financing area, including: aircraft operating lease transactions; securitization transactions; aircraft purchase and sale transactions; single investor and leveraged lease transactions; cross-border financing transactions; regional jet and commercial jet manufacturer purchase transactions; engine leasing and financing transactions; spare parts leasing and financing transactions; leveraged lease, operating lease and debt workouts and restructurings; and repossessions and foreclosures.


Mr. Piels is a frequent lecturer and author, and is listed in the Guide to the World’s Leading Aviation Lawyers, Euromoney’s Best of the Best Aviation Lawyers, the International Who’s Who of Aviation Lawyers, The Best Lawyers in America and Chambers USA - America's Leading Business Lawyers.  His recent seminars and speaking engagements include: “ Cape Town Convention – Cross Border Transactions“ ; “Airline Restructuring and Bankruptcy: the Financiers Perspective”; “Aircraft Operating Lease Training Seminar”; “Default and Restructuring: What Happens When It All Goes Wrong?”; “Doing Deals: Bank Financings”; and “Doing Deals: Equipment Leasing”.  His publications include the chapter “Division 10: Leasing of Goods,” in the book “Sales and Leasing in California Commercial Law Practice” (Cal. CEB) and the chapter “Aircraft Operating Leases – Equipment Nuances” in the book “Operating Leases: The Complete Guide” (Amembal and Associates).


Mr. Piels earned his J.D. from the University of Oregon School of Law (1980, Order of the Coif) and his B.A. from Macalester College (1977, Economics, cum laude).  He is a member of the Subcommittee on Aircraft Finance and Contracts of the American Bar Association, and serves on the Cape Town International Registry Advisory Board as the ABA’s alternate member designate.

University of OregonJ.D. 1980Macalester CollegeBA 1977
American Bar Association American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers, Inc

Office Location

50 California Street, Suite 2800
San Francisco, CA 94111
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2017 Lawyer of the Year in Securitization and Structured Finance Law of the San Francisco Metro Area2013 Lawyer of the Year in Equipment Finance Law of the San Francisco Metro Area
William B. Piels has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2017!William B. Piels has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2013!

Practice Areas

Equipment Finance Law
Securitization and Structured Finance Law

Other Information

Gender: Male