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Aviation Law Blog

Welcome to the Holland & Knight Aviation Law Blog, featuring news and analysis related to aviation litigation, finance and regulation.

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The FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, enacted on Oct. 5, 2018, has clarified and confirmed the pre-emptive effect of the federal statute intended to shield from liability owners, lessors and secured parties not in operational control of an aircraft for injuries to persons on board an accident aircraft. This clarification comes by way of an amendment to the federal statute, 49 U.S.C. §44112(b).
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Holland & Knight recently advised a client in connection with the purchase of an Airbus A320-200 aircraft registered in Jordan. With a timeframe of just over 10 months from receiving the first draft of the novation agreement to close, several issues that almost led to the deal being scrapped completely and a minor panic that the financing availability end date would pass before we transferred title, this was a deal that kept on giving.
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October 29, 2018
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On Oct. 5, 2018, President Trump signed into law the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 (Public Law 115-254), which reauthorizes funding of the FAA through Sept. 30, 2023. This is the first long-term FAA reauthorization since 2012 that has been signed into law. The new reauthorization takes significant steps forward in the continuing integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drones, into the national airspace.
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The U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Eighth and Tenth Circuits recently affirmed district court opinions holding that the Airline Deregulation Act (ADA) preempted state law claims that challenged prices charged by air ambulance service providers. They join a growing number of federal courts that have similarly found preemption of state statutory and common laws affecting air ambulance operators' prices and services.
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October 15, 2018
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On Sept. 17, 2018, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) completed its rulemaking on air charter brokers, after it had been pending for five years. The Final Rule, which becomes effective on Feb. 14, 2019, creates a new class of indirect air carrier able to hold out and contract for planeload single-entity charters as a principal. Thus, entities wishing to arrange for such transportation have the ability to do so without worrying about crossing the line into offering unauthorized air transportation.
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October 5, 2018
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Holland & Knight’s Aircraft Finance Team has partnered with SMBC Aviation Capital Limited to co-direct and participate in Euromoney’s Latin America School of Aviation Finance Sept. 11-12 in Mexico City.
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September 10, 2018
Effective immediately, the Illinois General Assembly has pre-empted all Illinois municipalities other than Chicago, including home rule municipalities, from regulating "unmanned aircraft systems," commonly referred to as "drones."
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August 9, 2018
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The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York recently addressed a novel question concerning inspection costs under the Montreal Convention (MC). In Indemnity Ins. Co. of N. Am. v. Agility Logistics Corp., plaintiff, the insurer-subrogee, sued defendant to recover the cost of an aircraft engine inspection that ultimately revealed no transport-related physical damage to the engine.
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July 24, 2018
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In a significant decision for the air ambulance industry, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that the Airline Deregulation Act (ADA) pre-empts enforcement of a Florida law limiting an air ambulance operator's ability to collect unpaid amounts on its invoices. The decision, Bailey v. Rocky Mountain Holdings LLC, affirms the district court’s dismissal of a proposed class action against the operator.
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May 24, 2018
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On May 8, President Donald Trump announced that the United States is withdrawing from the multilateral nuclear accord with Iran known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The U.S. will reimpose sanctions suspended under the JCPOA subject to certain 90-day and 180-day wind-down periods. Further, the U.S. Treasury Department Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) will withdraw certain authorizations granted as part of the JCPOA.
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May 10, 2018
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In the course of an aircraft lease negotiation, the lessee will typically seek to ensure that the lessor provides an express covenant to the lessee that for so long as no default has occurred and is continuing under the lease, the lessor will not disturb the lessee’s quiet use, possession and enjoyment of the aircraft. Some lessee’s go further and press for lessor to covenant as to itself as well as any person claiming through the lessor (such as the lessor’s financier, the owner – if different from the lessor – or an assignee or transferee of the lessor).
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May 3, 2018
At CAPA's 2018 Americas Aviation Summit in Houston, Aviation attorney Anita Mosner moderated panel on rethinking United States foreign ownership rules for domestic airlines.
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May 2, 2018
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Once the airplane leaves the gate, it's too late to try to get on board. And once the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issues a Record of Decision about new departure procedures, you have only a short time to petition for review.
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March 28, 2018
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The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently upheld a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) decision to publish an airworthiness directive ordering the removal of certain cylinder assemblies used in piston engines.
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March 20, 2018
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In Martin v. United Airlines, Inc., __ Fed. App'x __, 2018 WL 992289 (10th Cir. Feb. 21, 2018), Oklahoma residents brought a putative class action asserting various breach of contract theories against the airline arising from their inability to rebook their nonrefundable tickets after they canceled their flight reservations.
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March 19, 2018
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On Dec. 12, 2017 President Trump signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 (NDAA), authorizing appropriations for various military and national defense programs. The NDAA also contained two key provisions regarding unmanned aircraft systems, or drones, worthy of note.
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December 14, 2017
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Safety-sensitive transportation workers in the aviation, trucking, rail, transit and pipeline industries, as well as certain U.S. Coast Guard employees, are required to submit to random drug testing under federal law. Starting on Jan. 1, 2018, these employees will also be tested for hydrocodone, hydromorphone, oxymorphone and oxycodone, according to a final rule issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). Drugs containing these semi-synthetic opioids include Vicodin, OxyContin, Lortab, Norco, Percocet and Dilaudid. The DOT rule mirrors testing required by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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December 8, 2017
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Twenty-two Holland & Knight transportation attorneys have been ranked among the leading practitioners in the world in aviation and shipping law by Law Business Research Limited as part of its Who’s Who Legal Awards program for 2018.
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November 28, 2017
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Nov. 2, 2017, fulfilled President Donald Trump's directive, issued in a Presidential Memorandum on Oct. 25, 2017, to launch a three-year Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS, or drone) Integration Pilot Program. The program is designed to safely test innovative small UAS operations in partnership with state, local and tribal jurisdictions, and generate data for future UAS policy and rulemaking.
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