In a Notice of Public Meeting published April 26, 2011, the FAA announced that it will be holding a public meeting on Wednesday, June 1, 2011, to discuss and receive input on the issue of the U.S. registration of aircraft in the name of owner trustees on behalf of owner trusts whose beneficiaries are neither U.S. citizens nor resident aliens. At the meeting FAA representatives will review the provisions of 49 U.S.C. 44102 and 14 CFR 47.7(c) and identify the issues that are relevant to compliance with those statutory and regulatory requirements in the context of trusts with foreign beneficiaries. The FAA will also provide attendees with an opportunity to provide input to the FAA regarding the appropriate application of the statute and regulations in the context of “how a trust can be structured and implemented for purposes of aircraft registrations that satisfy statutory and regulatory requirements regarding ownership and U.S. citizenship.”
To that end, the FAA “seeks a discussion with interested members of the public about the factors that would weigh in favor of or against a finding that a trustee is an “owner” of an aircraft.” In this context the FAA is interested in answers to the following questions:
- What are the appropriate obligations to impose on a trustee of a trust with beneficiaries that are neither U.S. citizens nor resident aliens in order to satisfy the statute and regulations?
- In the case of a trust with beneficiaries that are neither U.S. citizens nor resident aliens, which rights and actions must be prohibited on the part of the beneficiaries in order to satisfy the statute and regulations?
- Which forms of granting possession, use or operational control of an aircraft by a trustee to its beneficiaries that are not U.S. citizens or resident aliens are permitted and which are prohibited under the statute and regulations?
- What are the specific elements of “the trustee’s authority” (14 CFR 47.7(c)(iii)) about which the FAA should be concerned, and what are the forms of influence or limitation that the FAA should proscribe?
- How may a beneficiary that is not a U.S. citizen or resident alien participate in the decision to remove a trustee in accordance with the statute and regulations?
- To what extent, if any, are the FAA interpretations cited above in need of amendment? and
- Which, if any, knowledge and information requirements (e.g., address of operator, location of maintenance records, principal hangar location) are appropriate for the FAA to impose on trustees of trusts beneficiaries that are not U.S. citizens or resident aliens?
The meeting will be held at the Marriott Renaissance Convention Center Hotel, 10 North Broadway Avenue, Oklahoma City, OK 73102, Phone (405) 228-8000 or (800) 468-3571. If you would like further information regarding the meeting, you may contact LaDeana Peden at (405) 954-3296, Office of Aeronautical Center Counsel, Federal Aviation Administration.