Compliance with Regulation: Does it Matter?

Published on 28th June 2022

Private purveyors and charter carrier companies consider regulatory compliance indispensable in operating a successful business aircraft. These companies operate in a highly regulated environment, where the operational standards and requirements set by aviation bodies and government agencies are often at odds or balance with each other and with specific clients’ goals. Therefore, it is paramount that these firms avoid common pitfalls while deciding between different operating options to ensure regulatory compliance.

KlasJet provides a classic example of a charter carrier that has taken a keen approach to promote operational safety and ensure strict compliance with various regulations and standards set out by aviation bodies for the business aviation industry. This way, the company ensures that its customers and staff can experience safe and seamless flight itineraries while traveling to various destinations, leading to increased confidence and attractiveness for private charter services.

Rita Domkute, the CEO of KlasJet, has made an application for the management of the private charter carriers to pay special attention to foreign regulations, from state property taxes to sales and insurance issues that are likely to affect the operation of private and corporate aircraft. For example, this may entail evaluating insurance policies applicable in different jurisdictions to ensure total compliance.

From a risk-management perspective, compliance with the insurance policy emboldens the management of charter carriers to act in accordance with the insurance application and meet the terms of the insurance policy. Ensuring compliance with insurance policies provides an effective way to boost confidence among private passengers and other travelers who use private or corporate charter services regularly.

For charter carriers to reach the hallmark of regulatory compliance, they must develop an awareness of various regulatory issues that may potentially occur in the private aviation business. This requires these firms to familiarize themselves with the range of international aviation regulations, such as the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) regulatory standards. Whereas the former stipulates aviation regulations pertaining to aircraft operations, the latter focuses on regulatory standards relating to the design, production, modification, and operation of different aircraft variants used in private aviation.

An excellent example of a regulatory requirement for business aviation companies by the European Union is the Ramp Inspection Program (SAFA/SACA). This precondition requires European charter carriers to undergo regular SAFA/SACA assessments to ensure safety compliance with EU standards.

As part of the flight department crew, companies offering charter carrier services include an aviation engineer who monitors the condition of aircraft instrument systems before and during flights. Flight engineers work collaboratively with flight crewmembers to ensure compliance with rigorous safety standards set out by the private carrier and aviation bodies to ensure safety for private jet travel passengers.

According to the CEO of KlasJet, another requirement for regulatory compliance is that companies operating business aircraft should take an expedient approach to adapt the existing standards, practices, and technologies developed for business aviation. The requirement by regulators for private purveyors to develop a comprehensive Safety Management System (SMS) has helped many of these companies minimize safety and compliance issues across their aircraft fleet. Markedly, a significant majority of charter carriers have leveraged modern technologies to facilitate the real-time collection of flight safety data from operational aircraft to enable flight risk assessments. 

Further, regulatory compliance demands that the management of business aviation companies should maintain a solid orientation to developing professional teams. Recruiting individuals who are experienced within and outside the aviation counsel is key to maintaining operational efficiency and minimizing issues of regulatory non-compliance. This includes experienced flight department personnel, experienced aviation counsel, insurance agents, risk department agents, and tax advisors. Having a professional team in place can fundamentally help to enhance a firm’s ability to fulfill the stipulated requirements and ensure regulatory compliance.

Compliance does not begin and end with developing professional teams and considering potential regulatory issues. The management of charter carriers must make headway and review potential regulatory issues that may emanate from using various aircraft to provide private charter services.

All undertaken regulatory reviews by these companies must follow the Industry Audit Standards specified by the EASA and other regulators to avoid inconsistencies and ensure total compliance. Critically, these firms must address regulatory issues surrounding the use of purchased aircraft and those operated on wet and dry leases. Any decisions concerning the deployment of the flight crew to private aircraft should aim at promoting compliant aircraft operations. 

Private aviation is subject to many regulations, which may expose business aviation companies to various regulatory issues. Assembling a professional and experienced team and identifying potential regulatory issues through periodic reviews can help avert the risk of regulatory non-compliance. Critically, companies involved in the private aviation business must review the facts and issues surrounding the ownership and utilization of private aircraft, including leased aircraft, to avoid inadvertent regulatory violations. Compliance with operational standards and multi-level regulations stipulated by international and national agencies is paramount to promoting safety and restoring passengers’ confidence in private aviation.

Best Regards,

Zydrune Budnike

Communications Project Manager

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