On April 29, 2005, European Union Regulation 785/2004 will go into effect. The new regulation requires commercial and non-commercial aircraft operators to carry liability insurance with the minimum liability limits set forth in the regulation. The liability minimums are based upon an aircraft’s Maximum Gross Take Off Weight (“MGTOW”). The required insurance includes liability to third-parties (including war and terrorism coverage), passengers, baggage and cargo.
At this point, it is unclear whether this coverage will be available on an annual basis or a per trip basis. However, what is clear is that aircraft operators traveling to, from, into and over European Union member countries without the minimum insurance will be subject to sanction. The regulation states that sanctions shall be “effective, proportional and dissuasive” and can include loss of license, refusal of permission to land and possibly criminal prosecution.
If you intend to fly to, from, into or over any European Union states after April 29, 2005, make sure you have the minimum liability limits required by the regulation and carry proof of this insurance with you on the aircraft.