Pilot Counsel

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Pilot Counsel: IFR to a VFR airport

Pilot Magazine | May 06, 2015

The bottom line is, an alternate airport must be included in every case if the destination airport does not have an instrument approach procedure.

Pilot Counsel

Pilot Magazine | Apr 03, 2015

A recent legal decision reminds us that a pilot (or any other operator) is personally responsible to ensure that an aircraft on which any maintenance has been performed is appropriately signed off for return to service before the aircraft is operated.

Try to comply

Pilot Magazine | Mar 09, 2015

FAR 91.213 is a rule that has troubled general aviation pilots and owners for years.

Unmanned aircraft systems

Pilot Magazine | Jan 08, 2015

The legal status of unmanned aircraft systems (also called UAVs—unmanned aerial vehicles—and more colloquially, “drones”) has now been confirmed to technically be “aircraft” subject to relevant FAR Part 91 general operating and flight rules.

Pilot Counsel: Defining airworthiness

Pilot Magazine | Dec 01, 2014

A recent opinion of the NTSB in an FAA enforcement case illustrates the sometimes convoluted concept of aircraft “airworthiness.”

It could happen to you

Pilot Magazine | Nov 07, 2014

It could happen to you. Flying into notam-established security airspace is one of the most prevalent violations charged against general aviation pilots.

Hangar storage

Pilot Magazine | Oct 02, 2014

One of the many benefits offered to participants in the AOPA Legal Services Plan is a one-time annual review and critique of certain aviation documents—in this case, a hangar lease agreement that a LSP participant has been asked to execute.

Pilot Counsel: Revisiting shared expenses

Pilot Magazine | Sep 04, 2014

Two recent legal interpretations by the FAA’s chief counsel deal with the time-honored privilege of a private pilot—and a commercial and ATP pilot while exercising only private pilot privileges—to conduct a shared-expense flight.

Pilot Counsel: Aircraft ‘accidents’ and mishaps

Pilot Magazine | Aug 05, 2014

The NTSB’s official definition of an aircraft accident is different from what is more frequently referred to colloquially as an aircraft accident.

Pilot Counsel: Don’t wait too long

Pilot Magazine | Jul 31, 2014

It is time to remind readers about the FAA’s Aviation Safety Reporting Program—administered by NASA as the Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS).