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Why do I need to register my UAS?

Federal law requires that small unmanned aircraft weighing more than .55 pounds and less than 55, be registered with the FAA and marked with a registration number, either by registering online or by using the legacy paper based registration process.

Do I always have to have my Certificate of Aircraft Registration with me while flying my UAS?
Yes. You must have the FAA registration certificate in your possession when operating an unmanned aircraft. The certificate can be available either on paper or electronically.

If another person operates your UAS, they must have the UAS registration certificate in their possession. You can give them a paper copy or email a copy to them.

Federal law requires UAS operators who are required to register (those not flying exclusively under the Special Rule for Model Aircraft) to show the certificate of registration to any Federal, State, or local law enforcement officer if asked. You can show it electronically or show the printed certificate.

If I'm just flying my UAS inside a building, do I have to register it?
If you're flying indoors, you do not need to register your unmanned aircraft as the FAA does not regulate indoor UAS use.

If I'm flying my UAS in my own yard, do I have to register it?
You will need to register your UAS if the UAS weighs more than 0.55 pounds.

Is there a penalty for failing to register?
Failure to register an unmanned aircraft that is required to be registered may result in regulatory and criminal penalties. The FAA may assess civil penalties up to $27,500. Criminal penalties include fines of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment for up to three years.

There is no one-size-fits-all enforcement action for violations. All aspects of a violation will be considered, along with mitigating and aggravating circumstances surrounding the violation. In general, the FAA will attempt to educate operators who fail to comply with registration requirements. However, fines will remain an option when egregious circumstances are present.