airplane records

Airplane Records You Need in Every Stage of Ownership

Many things can change for an airplane during its lifespan, as well as they can change for you. Ownership processes have their stages and airplane records are different as time goes by. Get to know what you require for each part of your aircraft’s life cycle.

Understanding what is the right documentation for an airplane depending on each stage can be easily compared to the papers you need as you grow up. Registration comes before everything, then renewals are required when the certification expires, and at the end, de-registration. A transfer of ownership may happen as well if the aircraft is sold.

airplane records

Initial Aircraft Registration Form

The first type of documentation an aircraft requires as soon as it comes brand-new from the factory, and the first most aircraft owners must fill to operate their airplane legally. This will give an aircraft its N-number for the first time, which may last until its final days. To apply for aircraft registration, you need to be a US citizen, and the aircraft shouldn’t be registered in another country. The form for it is called AC 8050-1. You can find it on our website under the ‘Initial Registration’ tab.

Airworthiness Certificate

Besides the initial registration, you have to prove you are a responsible aircraft operator and that you know what you are doing as soon as you get into the cockpit. This certification is a formal document issued by the Aircraft Certification Service, a department of the Federal Aviation Administration.

Registration Renewal

Possibly the most used form of the whole website, and the one which you’ll be needing often until the aircraft is sold or dismantled. From the day you applied for the initial registration (or since you last renewed your registration), there is a 3 year validity period. You might have an idea of when the certification is about to expire, but in case you don’t, the Federal Aviation Administration will let you know with a notice to your mailing address.


The predilect form for those aircraft owners who ignore or throw away the letters from the FAA asking to renew their documentation. If the third letter and definitive letter appear in your mailbox, renewal is no longer useful and you have to register the aircraft again. Watch out though,  you could lose your N-number if for any reason you get to this point.


When your partnership days with your favorite airplane are at the edge of their end, this is the form that you must use. De-registration must be filled when you will no longer own the airplane, whether it’s sold, scrapped/destroyed, exported, or just towed to an aircraft boneyard in the middle of the desert.

Find The Right Record For Your Airplane Here

Taking care of your aircraft’s maintenance is as important as caring about its documentation. All the parts of the process matter. In regards to documentation, at the National Aviation Documentation center, you can find all the forms you need for the different stages of your airplane.

Don’t make a fuzz out of dealing with the airplane records and right paperwork when the time comes. Make it easy, make it simple: add to your bookmark this website, as it will help you and your aircraft for as long as you wish to fly.