Aviation Law

Aviation law governs all facets of air travel. It impacts those parties that provide air travel services, such as airlines, pilots, maintenance crews, security personnel and air traffic controllers. It also affects those that purchase air travel services, such as passengers and couriers.

Federal Aviation Law

In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) serve as the primary federal agencies that regulate air travel.

  • FAA. The FAA issues and enforces regulations on the manufacture, operation and maintenance of aircraft. The FAA also certifies pilots and airports, and provides navigation and air traffic management services to civil and military aircraft.
  • NTSB. The NTSB investigates all civil aviation accidents in the United States and issues safety recommendations to prevent future aviation accidents.
  • TSA. Created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the TSA checks baggages and screens passengers for security threats.

State Laws

Although states cannot regulate rates, routes, or services of carriers, they may enact their own laws that are consistent with federal aviation law.

International Laws and Organizations

Because of the international nature of air travel, countries have entered into conventions to normalize the laws that regulate airlines and set forth the rights of passengers. For example, the Warsaw Convention limits the liability of airlines for accidents on international flights, except where the airline engaged in willful misconduct.

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) also regulates air travel by providings general rules and mediating international aviation law disputes.

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  • Maybe Drone Privacy Shouldn't Be a Federal Case - IEEE Spectrum August 30, 2016 IEEE SpectrumMaybe Drone Privacy Shouldn't Be a Federal CaseIEEE SpectrumBeing a cynic, I fully expected the FAA to side with Amazon, Google, and countless drone companies in turning the air directly above my house and community into a public…
  • Baby-faced 'Barefoot Bandit' faces parole. Now he wants to be the next Steve Jobs. - Washington Post August 30, 2016 Washington PostBaby-faced 'Barefoot Bandit' faces parole. Now he wants to be the next Steve Jobs.Washington PostNow 25, he's leaning toward becoming the Steve Jobs of aviation. "Nothing ever ... In prison, he spent much of his time…
  • Germanwings Crash - The Week Magazine August 30, 2016 Germanwings CrashThe Week Magazine"The liability for the victims would be uncapped," George Leloudas, an aviation law expert, told Bloomberg. "From the perspective of the airline, it's difficult. There are no real defenses that you…
  • Germanwings Crash - The Week Magazine August 30, 2016 Germanwings CrashThe Week Magazine... will likely begin at $139,000. Kevin Durkin, an air crash attorney at Clifford Law Offices in Chicago, told Bloomberg that the convention "does not limit a person's recovery," and the claimants may be…
  • WW3 Alert: Russia Eyes Poland As Next Target? NATO Prepares ... - Morning News USA August 29, 2016 Morning News USAWW3 Alert: Russia Eyes Poland As Next Target? NATO Prepares ...Morning News USARussia has been stirring things up in the European region, and it appears that the country is not stopping its plans to carry out operations in Poland. As…

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  • MARPA Returning to Japan August 29, 2016 MARPA plans to promote PMA at the Japan International Aerospace Exhibition 2016, in Tokyo, Japan, October 12-15. Continue reading →
  • ICAO Council Approves Draft Emissions Agreement August 29, 2016 The ICAO Council has reportedly signed off on a draft of the climate change mitigation plan the organization intends to submit to the upcoming 2016 Assembly. Full details of the plan have not been made public, and are reportedly still...
  • Part 107, New U.S. Small UAS Rule, Now in Effect August 29, 2016 The FAA's new rule, known as Part 107, permitting small UAS use under specified conditions took effect today. The final rule was announced in June. Testing centers are now open for operators to begin the process of applying for a...
  • Aviation Noise Is an Issue that Needs a Reasonable Solution August 27, 2016 In the process of searching the internet for information about aviation noise, I often run across web pages like this one:http://www.beechtalk.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=127555 where pilots lament how people move next to airports and then…
  • Drone Operations Near Wildfires Spark New Laws and Technological Advances August 26, 2016 As wildfire season heats up in the Western United States, drone (also known as "unmanned aircraft systems" or "UAS") operations near wildfires have spurred technological advances and prompted a series of state and federal statutory and regulatory…