Federal Aviation Administration

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Next Generation State Privacy Law: Regulating the Commercial Use of Drones

When most Americans think of drones, they think of unmanned, often weaponized aircraft that are used by governments in areas of conflict for intelligence or combat purposes. However, the proverbial sky is the limit on the...more

Aircraft Transaction Basics - A Business Development Opportunity

This paper will describe the basics of aircraft transactions, including aircraft sale, purchase and ownership issues and how current aviation practitioners can expand their practice area to include aircraft transactions, pull...more

Waiting for Iskanian, Part 3 - Friends of the Plaintiff

As we await Thursday's oral argument before the California Supreme Court in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation of Los Angeles, in Part 3 of our series of posts, we'll take a look at the amici curiae supporting plaintiffs. ...more

First in Flight, Tops in Tech, Ascendant in UAS: Drones and North Carolina

The next time you go for a long hike in a national forest with no cell phone service, you might want to take a drone with you so that you can send for help when you break your leg, dehydrate, and need help. ...more

California Environmental Law and Policy Update

Environmental and Policy Focus - DWR must acquire properties before testing tunnel for diversion of water to Southern California - CourtHouse News - Mar 17: A California appellate court ruled last week that, before...more

The Uniform Relocation Act Does Not Provide a Private Right of Action to Property Owners

On March 7th, a U.S. District Court sided with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on whether the Uniform Relocation Act (URA) provides private property owners with a private right of action: it does not. The Pacific...more

Special Due Diligence Concerns When Buying Unmanned Aerial Systems

The regulatory lid is about to come off domestic commercial use of Unmanned Aerial Systems (“UASs”). When that happens, like a vacuum, the U. S. commercial market will seek to deploy every viable system. In the rush to...more

The Federal Aviation Administration Appeals Most Recent Drone Ruling

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has appealed this month's ruling by an administrative law judge striking down a fine against paid photographer who had strapped cameras to a model airplane and photographed the...more

FAA Lacks Authority to Ground Small UAVs Used for Commercial Purposes

A victory for a small commercial unmanned aerial vehicle operator demonstrates the Federal Aviation Administration’s struggle to keep pace with new technologies. On March 6, 2014, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) of...more

Administrative Law Judge Rules Camera-Equipped Model Airplanes Are Cleared for Take-Off

A ruling by an administrative law judge punches a hole through the FAA's ban on the unlicensed use of commercial drones. The decision may be significant for ongoing discussions in Congress and in Indian Country about drone...more

Decision Yesterday Deals Blow to FAA Prohibition on the Use of Commercial Drones

In a setback to the FAA's ban on the unlicensed use of commercial drones, a federal administrative law judge has ruled that the FAA could not fine a Virginia man who used a model aircraft to take photographs and film for...more

India’s Aviation Safety Rating Downgrade Could Have Cascading Effects

On January 31, 2014, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) downgraded India’s aviation safety rating to Category 2 under the FAA’s International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) program – a program designed to...more

The Cape Town Convention: An Evolving Process (with a Side Note on Non-Citizen Trusts)

Introduction - This is the second article for the International Comparative Legal Guide series. Our first article covered the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment (the “Convention”) and the...more

Infrastructure Alert - February 26, 2014

President Obama will announce his support for a four-year, $302 billion transportation funding bill to repair and rebuild bridges, tunnels, roads and transit. About $150 billion of the bill would be paid for through corporate...more

When Less Is More: Drafting Enforceable Arbitration Provisions

When drafting contracts, can specificity ever not be a virtue? When a contract leaves material terms open, after all, the contract might be void for indefiniteness. E.g., Boyce v. McMahan, 285 N.C. 730, 734, 208 S.E.2d 692,...more

Court Sides With Federal Government Over Santa Monica Airport

As we reported last month, the United States of America and the Federal Aviation Administration had filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the City of Santa Monica in federal court seeking to confirm its alleged right...more

Infrastructure Alert - February 11, 2014

The Panama Canal Authority and the GPUC, the construction consortium working on its expansion, have been deadlocked over whether the Canal will pay for $1.6 billion in cost overruns. Construction halted on February 5 due to...more

Fifth Circuit Delivers Crippling Blow to Controversial NLRB Class Action Waiver Theory

Arbitration is generally supposed to be faster, cheaper, and more predictable than litigation. Homebuilder D.R. Horton, like many other employers, certainly believed this when, in 2006, it began requiring employees to sign...more

Drones in the United States: What Will It Take to Fly?

The civilian use of unmanned aerial technology — UAVs, UASs or drones — is inevitable, and right now, the government is sorting through regulatory, aviation, telecommunications, First Amendment and privacy issues. Given the...more

FAA Selects Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Sites; Regulatory Questions Remain

FAA Action - On December 30, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that it has selected six public entities to serve as research and testing sites for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). In selecting the...more

Cape Wind Survives a Legal Challenge to FAA Approval: Is the Opposition Strategy to Play Whac-A-Mole?

On Wednesday, the Court of Appeals rejected a challenge by the Town of Barnstable to the FAA’s “no hazard” determination for Cape Wind. As background, the same court had determined in 2010 that a prior no hazard...more

Fate of Santa Monica Airport Up To Federal Court

On October 31, 2013, the City of Santa Monica filed a complaint in federal court against the United States of America and the Federal Aviation Administration ("FAA") with the hope of confirming its alleged right to control...more

FCC Sets Comment Deadlines for Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Environmental and Historic Review Processes for Small Cell and...

The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) recently released a Public Notice setting comment deadlines for its September 26, 2013 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”) on improving wireless facilities...more

Six Regional Drone Research Test Sites Chosen

The integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – popularly known as “drones” – into the national airspace took a major step forward last week with the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) selection of six regional...more

CFPB's Arbitration Study—A Warning to Consumer Financial Service Companies

On December 12, 2013, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published its “Arbitration Study Preliminary Results,” mandated by Section 1028(a) of the Dodd-Frank Act (the “Study”). Unfortunately (and despite its statements...more

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