Legal Entities

Legal entities, AOC ownership and changes of name

There are two types of legal entity- natural persons and artificial persons.

Natural persons are human beings and artificial persons are usually a Limited (Ltd) company, a public limited company (plc) or a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP).

Artificial persons require a legal documentary basis for their existence to bestow upon them the attributes of a legal person.

In this context, the legal documentary basis of existence would be a Certificate of Registration together with its Memorandum and Articles of Association.

Only legal entities can enter into contracts, sue, be sued or be prosecuted.

It is important to note that a trading name is not a legal entity.


Air Operator Certificate (AOC) ownership

An applicant for a UK AOC must have their principle place of business in the UK and operate G-registered aircraft, with certain exceptions.

Please note: The Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are not part of the UK.

A post holder in an AOC may not hold a post in another AOC without the approval of the CAA.

An AOC is not a saleable commodity and cannot be transferred from one legal entity to another.

The fee paid for one AOC application cannot be transferred to another, even in the event of the first application being withdrawn.

In the event that a company is sold as a going concern, it will remain the same legal entity and the AOC will continue to be in force provided that the management is considered competent.

A new company established for the purpose of purchasing the aircraft etc. from an AOC holder is a new legal entity and must apply for a new AOC prior to the commencement of commercial operations.


Changes of Name

The change of a company name does not have an effect on the AOC. However, a change in the company registration number, even if all operations remain unaltered, will warrant a new AOC issue application.