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UK – EU Transition, and UK Civil Aviation Regulations

To access current UK civil aviation regulations, including AMC and GM, CAA regulatory documents, please use this link to UK Regulation. Please note, if you use information and guidance under the Headings below, the references to EU regulations or EU websites in our guidance will not be an accurate information or description of your obligations under UK law. These pages are undergoing reviews and updates.

To register an aircraft on the UK Register, you will need to complete form CA1 and provide evidence that the aircraft is insured. There are additional specific requirements for different types of aircraft.

A fee is charged to register an aircraft and you will need to provide credit or debit card details on the application form.

Once we receive a registration application we will either register the aircraft or advise the applicant of any further actions required in accordance with our Service Standards.

Please note that the registration process is separate from the requirements to gain a Certificate of Airworthiness or Permit to Fly. New owners are reminded that once they become the owner of a UK Registered aircraft that they are responsible for ensuring that the aircraft is fully maintained and operated in line with the requirements of the Certificate of Airworthiness or Permit to Fly. In particular, new owners are reminded that once they enter or re-enter an aircraft on the UK Register of Civil aircraft that in order to fly the aircraft legally they are responsible for making an application to the CAA for the issue of a certificate of airworthiness or permit to fly. All issues surrounding the airworthiness of UK Registered aircraft are dealt with by the Shared Service Centre of the CAA or the appropriate recommending organisation for your aircraft.

An application for a Certificate of Airworthiness (C of A) cannot usually be accepted without appropriate transfer documents. Registration does not guarantee that the aircraft will qualify for an Airworthiness Certificate if the applicable requirements for qualifying for such certificate are not met and the CAA reserves the right to reject applications that do not meet the applicable requirements.

Important: In most cases the transfer document referenced above is an Export Certificate of Airworthiness (EC of A) which should declare compliance with UK airworthiness requirements. Unless otherwise agreed, the EC of A shall be issued no more than 60 days before the application for the C of A.

To register any aircraft, you will need to complete form CA1.

Complete form CA1

The application form for registering aircraft is Form CA1.

The CA1 application form can be completed digitally, but is not submitted online as it needs to be signed by the applicant and must therefore be printed.

Once printed and signed, the form can be scanned and emailed or faxed to the Aircraft Registration Section. As long as credit or debit card details are included on the form, there is no need to send a hard copy version of the form as well.

We do not insist that you use your private residential address, but do recommend that you use the most appropriate address for the distribution of safety related material. For example, a PO Box address would be acceptable.

Who is eligible to register an aircraft in the UK?

An aircraft can be entered on the UK Register of Civil Aircraft either under the name of the aircraft owner or the charterer by demise. For full details of the legislation around registration of aircraft in the UK, please see Articles 24 to 32 of the Air Navigation Order 2016.

To be eligible to be entered on the UK Register of Civil Aircraft, the aircraft must be owned or chartered by:

  • British citizens;
  • Nationals of any European Economic Area state;
  • Undertakings formed in accordance with the law of an EEA State which have their registered office, central administration or principal place of business within the EEA, including companies or undertakings incorporated in the UK;
  • Firms carrying out business in Scotland;
  • The Crown in right of Her Majesty's Government in the UK, and the Crown in right of the Scottish Administration;
  • British protected persons.

An aircraft can be owned or chartered by:

  • Commonwealth citizens,
  • Bodies incorporated in and who have their principal place of business in any part of the Commonwealth.
    • However, only if the aircraft could not be more suitably registered in another part of the Commonwealth. Examples of when an aircraft can be entered on the UK Register include when the aircraft is based and maintained in the United Kingdom or the aircraft is in storage.

An aircraft can also be owned by an 'unqualified' owner:

  • Nationals of any state not specified above,
  • Companies incorporated in a state not specified above.
    • However, only if the aircraft is not used for commercial air transport whilst registered in the UK, and if it could not be more suitably registered in another ICAO contracting state. Examples of when an aircraft can be entered on the UK Register include when the aircraft is based and maintained in the United Kingdom or the aircraft is in storage.
Close Who is eligible to register an aircraft in the UK?

Evidence of insurance

Evidence of insurance, or a declaration that the aircraft will not fly until evidence of insurance has been supplied to the CAA, must also be supplied with your application to register.

Details of insurance requirements are included on the CA1 application form. For further information please see Mandatory Insurance Requirements.

Specific requirements for different kinds of aircraft.

Additional details for registering different types of aircraft

There are specific requirements for each of the following kinds of aircraft:

New homebuilt aircraft

Constructor of a homebuilt

For a homebuilt aircraft, the 'constructor' for the purposes of form CA1 is the individual(s) who built the aircraft or who assembled the kit, rather than the kit manufacturer.

If a Light Aircraft Association (LAA) project number has been issued this should be quoted as the aircraft serial number rather than a kit number.

When to apply to register

There is no requirement to register a homebuilt while it is still at the plans stage or at an early stage of construction. You do not need to register a homebuilt until you actually need to apply registration marks to the aircraft or unless required by the LAA. However, you can apply to register up to six months in advance of this.

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New foreign manufactured aircraft

Confirmation that an aircraft is not registered abroad

To be registered in the UK, an aircraft must not be registered in any other country. We will need confirmation from the aircraft register of the exporting country that your aircraft is not registered there before we can register it in the UK. This confirmation should be included in your application, or at a later date to enable UK Registration.

Ownership

Registration in the UK can take place once ownership has passed from the foreign manufacturer to the applicant.

  • If the prospective owner applies to register the aircraft before they have actually become the owner, we will send them a form to complete and return to the CAA when they actually become the owner.

Airworthiness transfer documentation

If the aircraft being transferred requires a Certificate of Airworthiness (as opposed to a Permit to Fly) you must ensure that the appropriate airworthiness transfer documentation is obtained prior to requesting the confirmation of non-registration from the exporting country. Please see our transfer documentation page for further details.

Registration outside office hours - foreign delivery

By prior arrangement with the CAA, aircraft can be registered outside of normal office hours. This is usually required when aircraft are being delivered from abroad.

Please note that we will need to be provided with all relevant information in order to register your aircraft.

This service is subject to the Same Day service fee. Please also see our Service Standards for further information, or contact the Aircraft Registration section.

When to apply to register

You can apply to register the aircraft up to six months in advance of expected delivery/ownership transfer and actual registration in the UK. The prospective ICAO 24-bit aircraft address will be allocated at this stage.

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Used foreign registered aircraft

De-registration in the exporting country

An aircraft registered in a foreign country will need to be de-registered in that country before it can be registered in the UK. Confirmation that the aircraft has been de-registered should be included with the application to register the aircraft in the UK, or at a later date to enable UK Registration.

Ownership

Registration in the UK can only take place once ownership has passed to the applicant.

  • If the prospective owner applies to register the aircraft before they have actually become the owner, we will send them a form to complete and return to the CAA when they actually become the owner.

Airworthiness Transfer Documentation

If the aircraft being transferred requires a Certificate of Airworthiness (as opposed to a Permit to Fly) you must ensure that the appropriate airworthiness transfer documentation is obtained prior to requesting de-registration from the exporting country. Please see our transfer documentation page for further details.

Registration outside office hours - foreign delivery

By prior arrangement with the CAA, aircraft can be registered outside of normal office hours. This is usually required when aircraft are being delivered from abroad.

Please note that we will need to be provided with all relevant information in order to register your aircraft.

This service is subject to the Same Day service fee

When to apply to register

You can apply to register the aircraft up to six months in advance of expected delivery/ownership transfer and actual registration in the UK. The prospective ICAO 24-bit aircraft address will be allocated at this stage.

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New UK manufactured aircraft

Ownership

To register an aircraft, we require written confirmation from the manufacturer that ownership of the aircraft has been transferred to the customer.

If the customer applies to register the aircraft before they have become the owner, we will send a form to both the customer and the manufacturer to complete and return to the CAA once transfer of ownership has taken place.

  • If the aircraft needs to be registered prior to transfer of ownership to the initial customer then the aircraft may need to be registered to the manufacturer themselves.

When to apply to register

You can apply to register the aircraft up to six months in advance of expected delivery/ownership transfer and actual registration in the UK. The prospective ICAO 24-bit aircraft address will be allocated at this stage.

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Former UK registered aircraft never registered elsewhere

If an aircraft has previously been registered in the UK, it can be restored to any of its previous UK registration marks.

When to apply to register

An application to register can be made up to six months in advance of the application for a C of A or Permit to Fly. The applicant should also advise on the whereabouts and history of the aircraft since it was last removed from the UK Register

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Gliders

The requirements for the registration of gliders are essentially the same as for other aircraft.

Please read the relevant section above if your glider is:

  • Newly manufactured in the UK
  • Newly manufactured abroad
  • A used foreign registered aircraft

Non EASA gliders do not need to be UK Registered for any flight which:

(a) begins and ends in the United Kingdom without passing over any other country; and (b) is not for the purpose of public transport or commercial air transport.

Glider registration marks

By default, a glider's three-letter BGA trigraph will be used as the last three letters of its UK registration mark.

  • The British Gliding Association (BGA) is the recommending organisation for gliding in the UK and they maintain a record of gliders in the UK. The BGA issues a three-letter code for each glider, know as a trigraph.

For example, if the BGA trigraph is PXL the aircraft will be allocated the next available UK registration mark that contains PXL as the last three letters, so if G-CPXL is not available the aircraft will be allocated G-DPXL and so on. Out of sequence registration marks can also be used on gliders in place of trigraph related marks. 

BGA leaflet

The BGA have produced an information leaflet on registration and airworthiness issues which is available on their website, to view the leaflet see AMP leaflet 3-7.

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Availability and Display of UK Registration marks

Once an aircraft is entered on the UK Register it must display its UK registration markings, for details of the requirements and also guidance on what marks are available please see Registration Marks

Radio Licences

Please note that you may require a radio licence to be issued for your aircraft. All issues surrounding Radio Licensing are now dealt with by Ofcom , please contact them for further details.

Contact Us

Aircraft Registration
Civil Aviation Authority
Aviation House
Beehive Ring Road
Crawley
RH6 0YR

Email: aircraft.reg@caa.co.uk
Telephone: (0330) 022 1917
Fax (01293) 768590

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