Drone Liability

Timothy D. Crawley has been at the forefront of matters arising from the complex legal environment associated with the commercial, municipal and recreational use of unmanned drone aircraft (UAS), now commonly referred to as “drones”.  The tremendous potential for the use of drones by hobbyists and in commercial settings has raised many questions to be addressed by the insurance industry, regulators, and courts.

The FAA’s new Small UAS Rule (Part 107) now authorizes individuals who are at least 16 years old to obtain a “remote pilot certification” for commercial drone use.  The individual must successfully complete a Transportation Security Administration background screening and pass an FAA-administered aeronautical knowledge test to qualify.

Section 336 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 permits the recreational use of drones. Recreational drone users with aircraft weighing between .55 lbs. and 55 lbs. must register their aircraft through a dedicated FAA web site.

Mr. Crawley has been a frequent speaker on the issues surrounding the use of drones in London and throughout the United States and he has also been featured in multiple publications.  He and his team understand the legal and technical issues involved in this growing area of the law, and among the drone-related services offered by ACB include:

  • Advising individuals, businesses, and local governments as to applicable FAA regulations.
  • Advising insurers as to coverage questions relating to drone use and misuse.
  • Defending drone-related personal injury and property damage claims.
  • Defending civil rights claims predicated upon alleged constitutional violations facilitated through drone use.
  • Prosecuting or defending contract disputes involving drone services.
  • Defending businesses, governmental units, and individual clients against FAA enforcement actions.
  • Defending product liability actions against drone manufacturers or retailers.