European regulations on UAS/drones

    New European Drones Regulations

    IMPORTANT: As of 31 December 2020, the European regulations of UAS apply. This standard affects all drones regardless of their use or size. This section compiles the implementing regulations and frequently asked questions on it. You can find more detailed information on specific aspects in the different sections of the web within the “Dronets area”. A summary of the key aspects and minimum obligations are detailed in the point Do you have a drone?.


    Non-EASA activities or services

    European legislation does not apply to “non-EASA activities or services” so operators carrying out this type of activity must comply with the provisions of Royal Decree 1036/2017.
    ‘Non-EASA activities or services’ are those excluded from the scope of Regulation (EU) 2018/1139 of the European Parliament and of the Council, Article 2.3(a), carried out by military, customs, police, search and rescue, firefighting, border control, coastal surveillance or the like, under the control and responsibility of a Member State, undertaken in the general interest by or on behalf of a body vested with public authority.
    Additional information to carry out such operations is available in the section “UAS NO EASA Operators”.


    Availability of compulsory liability insurance

    Following the amendment of the Air Navigation Act, and until the entry into force of the UAS Royal Decree* supplementing the legal regime for the civil use of unmanned aircraft systems, it will be necessary to have an insurance policy covering civil liability against third parties for damages that may arise during and because of the execution of each flight that takes place (both recreational and professional purposes) in accordance with Articles 11 and 127 of the Air Navigation Act:

    • UAS with a MTOM equal to or greater than 20 kg for business purposes must comply with Regulation 785/2004, and;
    • Professional UAS with MTOM equal to or less than 20 kg and those for recreational purposes must comply with Royal Decree 37/2001 of 19 January 2001 updating the amount of damages provided for in the Air Navigation Act.

    Regulation 785/2004 establishes a minimum amount for damage to third parties on land of 750,000 SDRs -Special Drawing Rights- (for drones up to 500 kg) while Royal Decree 37/2001 the minimum amount to be covered is 220,000 SDRs.

    Adequate insurance shall be available to cover each flight carried out, and there is no need to contract a policy on a permanent basis.

    *Draft UAS Royal Decree currently under consideration which in its draft submitted to public consultation will exempt class C0 UAS and unmarked class UASs with a maximum take-off mass of less than 250 g operated in subcategory A1 from the mandatory insurance requirement.

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