The General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1994
The General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1994, often referred to as GARA, was passed as an amendment to the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 to “establish time limitations on certain civil actions against aircraft manufacturers…” In a nutshell, the act protects aircraft and part manufacturers from lawsuits if the aircraft or part at issue is more than eighteen years old at the time of the crash. The immunity provided to manufacturers by GARA applies even if the crash was caused by the manufacturer’s negligence, and even if the crash causes injury or death.
There are only four instances where GARA’s immunity provision will not apply to general aviation aircraft that are more than eighteen years old:
- If it can be shown that the manufacturer misrepresented, withheld or concealed information from the FAA that is directly related to the cause of the crash;
- If the victim of a crash is a passenger for the purpose of receiving medical or emergency treatment, e.g., air ambulance flights;
- If a person killed or injured by a crash was not on board the aircraft, e.g., the resident of a house hit by an aircraft; or
- If a suit is brought on a written warranty involving the aircraft.
The attorneys at Braden, Varner & Angelley, P.C. have successfully handled many general aviation crash cases involving GARA and have the legal knowledge and practical experience required to obtain favorable results for our clients. Contact us to learn more.