No-Deal Brexit: Impact On Aviation Law

Author:Ms Vonnick Le Guillou and Tony Payne
Profession:DLA Piper

While a range of outcomes, including a departure under the terms of the current Withdrawal Agreement, remains possible, it is important for businesses to plan for a no-deal Brexit, in which the UK leaves the EU without a withdrawal agreement or other deal. Here we look at the potential impact of a no-deal Brexit on aviation law.

Traffic rights

Legislation is now in place protecting basic aviation connectivity between the UK and EU in the event of no-deal, covering the interim period before a comprehensive air transport agreement is reached between the UK and the EU-27.

For a UK airline to continue to operate in the EU, the legislation requires operators to obtain an operating authorisation from each member state where it wants to operate, and submit to that member state flight programme details.

Nationality of airlines

Airlines currently owned by UK nationals will no longer retain EU carrier status. Airlines should apply for Third Country Authorisation to continue to fly in the EU after Brexit.

Aircraft design and maintenance

Certificates and approvals for aircraft productions, aircraft conformity, and release of new parts issued by the Civil Aviation Agency (CAA) will no longer be valid in the EU following the UK's EU departure. However, EU legislation is now in place to extend the validity of certain aviation safety licences.

Pilots and cabin crew

Crew training, licences and medicals will be under the control of the UK authorities and will no longer be recognised as equivalent in the EU.


The EU Commission has confirmed that security requirements for all direct passenger flights to and from the UK will remain as they are today and it will recognise UK passenger and baggage screening. UK cargo security regimes will also be recognised as equivalent to those of the EU. However, additional security requirements could...

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