Drone regulation—Spain—Q&A guide
Drone regulation—Spain—Q&A guide

The following TMT practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Drone regulation—Spain—Q&A guide
  • 1. What basic rules govern the operation of remotely piloted aircraft and unmanned aircraft (drones) in your jurisdiction? Which regulatory bodies are charged with enforcing these rules?
  • 2. What are the penalties for non-compliance with the laws and regulations governing drones?
  • 3. Is there any distinction between public and private drones, as well as between leisure use and commercial use?
  • 4. Is there a weight-based classification system for drones resulting in the application of different rules?
  • 5. Is there any distinction between completely autonomous drones and remotely piloted drones?
  • 6. Do specific rules regulate the design and manufacture of drones in your jurisdiction?
  • 7. Must drone manufacturers obtain any licences or other authorisation to carry out their business? Are manufacturers subject to any other specific rules?
  • 8. Do general product liability rules (or other specific liability rules) apply to the manufacture of drones?
  • 9. Must drones be registered in a specific national registry? If so, who is entitled to register drones and what requirements and restrictions apply? Is the registry organised as an operator registry or an owner registry?
  • More...

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to drone regulation in Spain published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: July 2020).

Authors: Augusta Abogados—Miquel Campos Faura; Sergi Giménez Binder

1. What basic rules govern the operation of remotely piloted aircraft and unmanned aircraft (drones) in your jurisdiction? Which regulatory bodies are charged with enforcing these rules?

The legal framework applicable to drone operations in Spain is composed of international conventions and accords, European regulations and directives, and domestic legislation.

At an international level, conventions such as the Convention on International Civil Aviation, of 7 December 1944 (the Chicago Convention), and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Circulars set forth the main rules on how drones must be treated by states. Spain, as a state party to the Chicago Convention, must comply with its provisions, resolutions and recommendations issued by ICAO.

From the perspective of EU legislation, the main applicable legislative pieces are:

  1. Regulation (EC) No. 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 20 February 2018, on common rules in the field of civil aviation and establishing a European Aviation Safety Agency;

  2. Regulation (EU) 2018/1139 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 4 July 2018, on common rules in the field of civil aviation and establishing a European Aviation Safety Agency, and amending, among others,

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