Use the Lexology Navigator tool to compare the answers in this article with those from other jurisdictions. 


Aircraft register

What are the requirements for entry in the domestic aircraft register?

An aircraft must be registered in the aircraft register as per the Regulation on Air Traffic Permission. The competent authority is the LBA. Registration is effected automatically by the LBA when granting the certificate of airworthiness. Therefore, obtaining a certificate of airworthiness is a prerequisite for registration of an aircraft in the aircraft register.

Mortgages and encumbrances

Is there a domestic register for aircraft mortgages, encumbrances and other interests? If so, what are the requirements and legal effects of registration?

Aircraft mortgages are registered in the aircraft mortgage register at the local court in Braunschweig.

An application for registration of an aircraft mortgage can be filed only after the aircraft is registered on the aircraft register. The application for registration of an aircraft mortgage must indicate the aircraft register number for the relevant aircraft be drafted and filed by a German notary by way of a notarial deed in German.

  • The notarial deed must be filed with the local court in Braunschweig and include the following documents and information:

  • the application for registration of the mortgage, which indicates the mortgage amount and the interest specifications;

  • general information on the aircraft, including:

  • the page number of the aircraft register on which the aircraft is registered;

  • the nationality and registry mark of the aircraft;

  • the aircraft type;

  • the serial number of the airframe; and

  • the name and place of residence of the aircraft owner;

  • an affidavit confirming that the mortgagor is the sole owner of the aircraft and that the aircraft is not mortgaged to another person or entity;

  • an affidavit confirming the value of the aircraft;

  • confirmation that the mortgagor owes the secured obligations to the mortgagee;

  • a declaration subjecting the aircraft to immediate enforcement proceedings in the case of default under the mortgage, which includes enforcement measures against the mortgagor;

  • confirmation that the mortgagee can obtain an enforceable copy of the notarial deed; and

  • confirmation that the mortgagor must bear the cost of the notarial deed and of registering the mortgage in the aircraft mortgage register.

The aircraft mortgage is registered after the payment of the registration fees is made and after the court has reviewed and approved the required documents. Registration of an aircraft mortgage takes about two to three days from receipt of payment by the court.

There is no separate mortgage register for aircraft engines and spare parts in Germany. An aircraft mortgage can be registered only over the whole aircraft. Spare parts or engines attached to the aircraft are not identified separately in the aircraft mortgage register. The engines and spare parts are considered parts of the aircraft. A registered aircraft mortgage will also cover spare parts and engines if:

  • the aircraft owner is also the owner of the spare parts and engines; and

  • the engines and spare parts are attached to the aircraft.

The parties can agree that an aircraft mortgage extends to engines and spare parts that are located elsewhere and are not attached to the aircraft. However, mortgage cannot be granted solely over the engines or spare parts.

To perfect an aircraft mortgage, the mortgage must be registered in the aircraft mortgage register. A registered aircraft mortgage takes priority over any subsequently registered mortgage. An aircraft buyer will become the owner subject to any previously registered mortgage and free of any mortgage that was unregistered at the time of the purchase.


In the case of an enforceable right (ie, a judgment or court order), the detention of an aircraft is possible under the Civil Procedure Code. The types of detention include the registration of an aircraft mortgage or even the auctioning of an aircraft.

Safety and maintenance

Safety issues are largely governed by EU regulations.

The national rules governing air traffic safety are primarily the Air Traffic Regulation, the Regulation for the Operation of Aircraft and the Regulation on the Examination of Aircraft.


The private use of drones requires permission from the competent local aviation authority if the drones:

  • have a maximum take-off weight of 5kg or more;

  • are operated within a distance of less than 1.5 kilometres of an airport; or

  • are operated at night.

Since October 1 2017, at the local aviation authority’s request, the operators of drones with a maximum take-off weight of more than 2kg must provide evidence of the following capabilities:

  • operating and navigating the drone;

  • knowledge of relevant air law rules; and

  • local airspace rules.

Such evidence can be provided through:

  • a valid pilot’s licence;

  • a certificate confirming the successful passing of an examination with an entity accredited by the LBA; or

  • a certificate confirming the instruction by an accredited air sport association.

Among others, the following types of drone operation are prohibited:

  • beyond the sight of the operator if the maximum take-off weight of the drone is 5kg or less;

  • at a height and lateral distance of 100 metres of crowds, accident scenes, disaster areas and other operation sites of authorities and organisations with safety or security missions as well as mobile establishments and army troops;

  • at a height and lateral distance of 100 metres of the outer boundaries of industrial, prison, military or energy production facilities;

  • at a height and lateral distance of 100 metres of governmental authorities, embassies and consulates, as well as police facilities;

  • at a height and lateral distance of 100 metres of federal highways and railway facilities;

  • over certain nature reserves;

  • over residential estates if the maximum take-off weight of the drone exceeds 0.25kg or if the device or its equipment can receive, transfer or record optical, acoustic or radio signals, unless the owner of the premises or the resident has expressly consented to the overflight; and

  • at a height and lateral distance of 100 metres of the boundaries of a hospital.

Click here to view the full article.