Steven R. Pounian

Steven R. Pounian

Of Counsel
New York, New York
(212) 972-9432
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Steven R. Pounian joined the firm of Kreindler & Kreindler LLP in 1980 and became a partner in 1987 focusing on aviation litigation. He is a magna cum laude graduate of Georgetown University with Honors (1977) and received his J.D. degree from New York University (1980). At law school, he was Senior Editor of the Review of Law and Social Change.

He is admitted to the bar of New York, the Federal Courts of Appeals of the Second, Third, Fifth, and D.C. Circuits and the United States Supreme Court and has appeared pro hac vice in numerous state and federal courts throughout the United States.

He has been involved with numerous aviation mass disaster cases, including:

  • the litigation involving the crash of Korean Air Lines flight 7 in the Sea of Japan, in which he was appointed as a member of the Plaintiffs' Trial Committee
  • the Pan American flight 103 disaster at Lockerbie, Scotland, in which he was appointed as Plaintiffs' Liaison Counsel and served as a member of the Plaintiffs' Trial Committee
  • the crash of an Air Force CT-43 (Boeing 737) at Dubrovnik, Croatia, in which he was appointed as Chairman of the Plaintiffs' Committee
  • the TWA 800 disaster off Long Island, New York, in which he was appointed as a member of the Plaintiffs' Committee and as Liaison Counsel
  • and, most recently, the crash of American Airlines flight 587 in Belle Harbor, New York, in which he was appointed Chairman of the Plaintiffs' Executive Committee.

He has worked on numerous trials resulting in favorable verdicts, most notably:

  • Pan Am 103 Lockerbie Disaster (E.D.N.Y. 1992) (wilful misconduct and damages verdicts)
  • Korean Air Lines Disaster (D.D.C. 1989) (wilful misconduct and damages verdicts)
  • Texasgulf Disaster (S.D.N.Y. 1985) (series of damage trials)
  • Eastern Airlines Disaster at Kennedy Airport (E.D.N.Y. 1982) (damages verdicts)
  • McClendon v. First Tennessee Bank (Shelby Co., Tennessee 1996) (largest death award in Tennessee history)
  • Cogar v. Central Mountain Air Services (Vancouver, British Columbia 1991) (largest death award in Canadian history)
  • Conway v. Cessna (New York Supreme Court 1996) (product liability verdict)

He has argued many legal issues in cases around the country, including the following reported cases:

  • Densberger v. United Technologies Corp., 283 F.3d 110 (2d Cir. 2002)
  • In re Air Crash off Long Island, New York on July 17, 1996,209 F.3d 200 (2d Cir. 2000)
  • United States ex rel. Kreindler & Kreindler v. United Technologies, 985 F.2d 1148 (2d Cir. 1993)
  • Baumgart v. Fairchild Aircraft, 981 F.2d 824 (5th Cir. 1993)
  • In re Korean Air Lines Disaster, 932 F.2d 1475 (D.D.C. 1991)
  • Wyler v. Korean Air Lines, 928 F.2d 1167 (D.D.C. 1991)
  • Rodriquez v. United States, 823 F.2d 735 (3d Cir. 1987)
  • Woodling v. Garrett, 8 13 F.2d 543 (2d Cir. 1987)
  • In re Air Crash Disaster at Warsaw, Poland, 748 F.2d 94 (2d Cir. 1984)
  • In re Air Crash Disaster at John F. Kennedy Airport, 687 F.2d 626 (2d Cir. 1982)
  • Vargas v. Insurance Co. of North America, 651 F.2d 838 (2d Cir. 1981)

He has also been involved in many other aviation crash cases, including numerous commuter, military, product liability and general aviation cases.

He was elected and served as Chair of the Aviation and Space law Committee of the American Bar Association (ABA) Tort and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS); Chair of the Trial Techniques Committee of ABA TIPS and has also served as a Vice-Chair of the Litigation Committee of ABA TIPS. He has served as a Court appointed mediator in the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York and as a Court appointed arbitrator in the Eastern District of New York. He has delivered several papers and given lectures at ABA Conventions and National Institutes, the Association of Trial Lawyers of America Convention, New York State Bar Litigation Seminars and the Southern Methodist University Air Law Symposium.

Areas of Practice

  • Aviation Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • New York, 1981
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, 1981
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, 1981
  • U.S. Federal Courts, 1981
  • U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit, 1986
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 2nd Circuit, 1982
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1986
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit, 1991
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1987


  • New York University School of Law, New York, New York
    • J.D. - 1980
    • Law Review: Review of Law and Social Change, Senior Editor, 1979 - 1980
  • Georgetown University, Washington, District of Columbia
    • B.A. (Magna Cum Laude) - 1977

Honors and Awards

  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Rating 5 out of 5
  • Listed in New York Best Lawyer
  • Listed in New York SuperLawyers

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • In re Korean Air Lines Disaster, Member, Plaintiffs; Trial Committee, September 1, 1983, MDL 565
  • American Bar Association, Chair, Committee on Aviation and Space Law, 1995 - 1996
  • American Bar Association, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • In re Lockerbie Air Disaster at Lockerbie, Scotland on December 21, 1988, MDL 799, Liaison Counsel