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New Licensing and Registration Requirement

From 1 July 2019:

  • before a pilot can operate any drone weighing more than 250 grams, the pilot will need to pass an online education course and register their drone. Some exceptions apply to this including pilots with a remote pilot licence, pilots holding a CASA authorisation form or pilots of drones weighing less than 250 grams which are flown for recreational purposes.
  • pilots flying drones weighing less than 250 grams for recreational purposes do not need to undertake the online course or register their drone. However, they still need to comply with certain rules including that the pilot will not operate the drone in a way that creates a hazard to another aircraft, person or property. Droneflyer sets out most of the rules for recreational drone flyers.
  • The registration fee will be about $20 for recreational flyers and for commercial flyers the registration fee will likely be between $100 and $160 per drone.
  • Penalties for non compliance can range depending on what you are doing but may be around $1000 to more than $10000 depending on the offence.

Drones can be handy for agri businesses, photography work, surveillance and for recreational use. However, it is clear that CASA is attempting to clamp down on the many safety issues that have been arising with the use of drones in recent times. Therefore, it is wise that before you start using a drone – that you familiarise yourself with all rules and laws.


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The information on this information sheet is general guidance only correct at the time of publication and is not legal advice. You should consult a lawyer for legal advice.

Updated: 26/06/2019