We offer aviation related legal and technical support services to a diverse range of clients including airports and potential and current air operators. Among the services provided are: UAS application consulting and preparation, certification, safety audits and evaluations, and legal representation in administrative enforcement (certificate) and civil penalty actions. Our primary goal is to help our varied clients comply with FAA and DOT regulations through proactive intervention. In the event that litigation is necessary we vigorously defend our client's interests in administrative, civil, and criminal courts.
Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS)
Obtaining a Special Airworthiness Certificate in the experimental category for a particular UAS is currently the only way civil operators of unmanned aircraft are accessing the National Airspace System. The FAA considers anyone operating a UAS, for any form of compensation, a civil operator. Experimental certificate regulations preclude carrying people or property for compensation or hire, but do allow operations for research and development, flight and sales demonstrations and crew training. The FAA has recently started approving applications under Section 333 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, "Special Rules for Certain Unmanned Aircraft Systems," which allow for commercial operations in low-risk, controlled environments. The first approvals were for agriculture and real estate operators.
A Certificate of Authorization, also called a “COA” is an authorization issued by the FAA to a public operator for a specific UAS activity. After a complete application is submitted, the FAA conducts a comprehensive operational and technical review. If necessary, provisions or limitations may be imposed as part of the approval to ensure the UAS can operate safely with other airspace users. In most cases, if the application is correctly written, the FAA will provide a formal response within 60 days from the time a completed application is submitted. Common public uses today include law enforcement, firefighting, border patrol, disaster relief, search and rescue, military training, and other government operational missions.
Whether you are seeking to operate a UAS for commercial or for public purposes we can help you navigate through the process- from beginning to succesesful acquisition of the Special Airworthiness Certificate or COA.
We utilize experienced Subject Matter Experts working as a team with the prospective operator and the Federal Aviation Administration to achieve the goal of certifying the operator in an efficient and timely manner. The methodology used by the partnership brings together Certification guidelines and checklists developed by the FAA and the systems and processes developed by the SMEs based on their experience as former FAA Inspectors and/or operators of aviation related business. The amount of time necessary to complete a certification is dependent on FAA resources and the resources of the operator. We help ensure that certification gates and deadlines are addressed in a timely manner and that all required documents are properly prepared and ready for submission to the FAA. Among other areas, our consultants have experience in:
- FAA and CAA Air Carrier Certification and Evaluation;
- Airport Certification and Evaluation;
- FAA and CAA Repair Station Certification and Evaluation;
- Experience in EC Communities Air Carrier Certification and Evaluation;
- Experience in Department of Defense (DOD) Certification and Evaluation;
- Experience in Aircraft Conversions Passenger and Cargo.
Whether your company requires short-term or long-term measures, our expert advice will help you navigate safely through federal certification issues.
Safety Audits and Evaluations
It is critical that aviation managers have a firm grasp of the compliance status and attitude of their respective organizations. The FAA, as a part of its annual inspection, will determine the whether the organization is in compliance with the Federal Aviation Regulations and has a "compliant attitude." This is unacceptable for two reasons: 1) Any finding of non-compliance can, and generally does, lead to and enforcement action which could result in either civil penalties, suspension or revocation of the operators certificate; and 2) The FAA inspectors use a minimum regulatory standard as the basis for its certification and enforcement actions. Today’s aviation operators must work to a higher standard, thereby improving safety and further insulating themselves from civil liability in the event of an accident.
Our Subject Matter Experts are highly experienced in aviation safety and regulatory oversight. They are either former FAA Aviation Safety Inspectors or individuals with extensive experience as managers of aviation organizations. Using the Federal Aviation Regulations as a starting point our teams utilize best practices from throughout the aviation industry to develop audit checklists and guidelines that are used during the audit and evaluation of the operator to determine whether:
- the operator is in full compliance with the applicable regulations;
- the operating specification accurately reflects the scope of the operation;
- the operations and/or maintenance manuals accurately reflect the scope of the operation; and
- whether employees are performing their duties in accordance with the manual(s).
Depending on our client's needs we assist them in developing manual and automated checklists and safeguards to ensure they maintain regulatory compliance. Operators often hire us to undertake comprehensive audits prior to FAA scheduled examinations. This allows the operator to identify and correct any deficiencies prior to FAA action.
Our team has significant experience in FAR-139 safety Per Certification Inspection audits, Airport Emergency Preparedness and incident management consulting, Airport Certification Manual audits, development and consulting, Airport Emergency Plan audits, development, and consulting, Facilitation of Emergency plan exercises, Safety Management consulting that brings real results, Safety and Security Program Evaluations and FAR-139 Training Program Development.
If the issue involves airports we have the team to solve your issue.
We, along with our strategic partners, have decades of experience representing individuals and organizations, in the area of aviation regulatory law. In addition, we have worked for the FAA and are very familiar with internal enforcement processes and procedures.
Due to our founding partner's extensive specialized aviation experience, working for the FAA, practicing law, and teaching aviation law at several universities, we have intimate knowledge of the aviation regulatory arena. Over the years we've taught thousands of pilots and operators about the FAA's enforcement and civil penalty process. We have a track record or reliability and success.
Each and every client we accept gets individualized custom attention designed to meet their legal needs. This is the only way to reliably achieve your ultimate goal. Since we choose to remain relatively small we work with only a limited number of clients and offer one-on-one personal service.
Aviation Proposal Writing
We, along with our strategic partners, have decades of experience in aviation related proposal/grant writing. We combine SME's and academic
proposal specialists with unparalleled experience to form a custom team for each client's needs. In addition, our agents and partners have worked for federal and state agencies and have a unique
perspective on what a winning proposal requires.
Due to our founding partner's extensive specialized aviation experience, working for the FAA, practicing law, and teaching aviation law at several universities, we have intimate knowledge of the aviation environment that assists us in writing targeted and successful proposals.
It may seem like a simple concept yet few consultants operate the way we do. Limiting the number of clients we accept allows us to strive for exceptional results.