Effective December 21, 2015 all Unmanned Aircraft Systems (Drones) are required to be registered with the FAA

Drone Operator Requirements:

The owner must be:

  • 13 years of age or older. (If the owner is less than 13 years of age, a person 13 years of age or older must register the small unmanned aircraft.)
  • The registrant must be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.
  • Visiting foreign nationals must register their UAS upon arrival in the United States (online registration serves as a certificate of ownership).

Operator Safety Guidelines:

  • Always fly below 400 feet altitude.
  • Always keep your unmanned aircraft in sight at all times.
  • Never fly near manned aircraft, especially near airports.
  • Never fly within 5 miles of an airport.
  • Never fly over groups of people, stadiums or sporting events.
  • Never fly near emergency response efforts.
  • Never fly under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Always be aware of FAA airspace Temporary Flight Restrictions.

What could happen if I don’t register?

If you fail to register your drone, you could be subject to civil and criminal penalties, including fines of up to $250,000 and/or up to 3 years in jail.

What if my Drone is heavier than 55lbs?

For Drones weighing more than 55lbs, the FAA requires you to register by paper. Register UAS that weigh more than 55 lbs. by paper here.

Drone Operation Rules


Flying for Fun

Flying for Work

Pilot Requirements No pilot requirements

Must have Remote Pilot Airman Certificate
(Pass Part 107 Aeronautical Knowledge Test)

Must be 16 years old
Must pass TSA vetting

Aircraft Requirements Must be registered if over 0.55 lbs. Must be less than 55 lbs.
Must be registered if over 0.55 lbs. (online)
Must undergo pre-flight check to ensure UAS is in condition for safe operation
Location Requirements 5 miles from airports without prior notification to airport and air traffic control Class G airspace*
Operating Rules Must ALWAYS yield right of way to manned aircraft
Must keep the aircraft in sight (visual line-of-sight)
UAS must be under 55 lbs.
Must follow community-based safety guidelines
Must notify airport and air traffic control tower before flying within 5 miles of an airport
Must keep the aircraft in sight (visual line-of-sight)*
Must fly under 400 feet*
Must fly during the day*
Must fly at or below 100 mph*
Must yield right of way to manned aircraft*
Must NOT fly over people*
Must NOT fly from a moving vehicle*
Example Applications Educational or recreational flying only Flying for commercial use (e.g. providing aerial surveying or photography services)
Flying incidental to a business (e.g. doing roof inspections or real estate photography)
Legal or Regulatory Basis Public Law 112-95, Section 336 – Special Rule for Model Aircraft
FAA Interpretation of the Special Rule for Model Aircraft
Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulation (14 CFR) Part 107