Understanding the Pilot Records Improvement Act (PRIA)

Understanding the Pilot Records Improvement Act (PRIA)

Jackson Barnett
Jackson Barnett

Principal Attorney

The Pilot Records Improvement Act (PRIA) emerged in response to several airline accidents attributed to pilot error. Investigations revealed that pilots involved in these accidents had histories of poor performance, yet their backgrounds were not thoroughly investigated by their employers. PRIA aims to address this gap by mandating air carriers to request and evaluate pilots’ background and safety records before approving them for flight operations.

Evolution of PRIA

Over time, PRIA has undergone amendments to strengthen its effectiveness. In 2010, following high-profile accidents involving Part 121 air carriers, amendments were signed into law, leading to the creation of a pilot records database (PRD) by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The PRD contains comprehensive pilot records dating back to August 1, 2005, including FAA certification events, employment history, and training data. Learn more about the Pilot Records Improvement Act of 1996 (PRIA) from the FAA site.

PRIA Requirements for Operators

Part 91 Operators: Part 91 operators, although not air carriers, must retain specific records related to pilot training, qualifications, disciplinary actions, and alcohol/drug testing results. While they are not required to request PRIA records, they must respond to requests from air carriers within 30 days.

Part 135 Operators: Part 135 operators, engaged in commercial air transportation, must request and review the past five years of a pilot’s records within 90 days of hiring. This includes obtaining consent from the pilot applicant and immunizing former employers from legal liabilities.

Pilot Records Database (PRD)

The FAA established Part 111, introducing the electronic PRD to improve pilot hiring processes and enhance safety. Operators mandated to submit and review information in the PRD include Part 119 certificate holders, fractional ownership operators, air tour operators, and corporate flight departments.

PRIA Resources and Compliance

The FAA provides various resources and guidance documents to facilitate PRIA compliance, including advisory circulars and process overviews. Operators can leverage these resources to ensure adherence to PRIA requirements and avoid penalties for non-compliance. Click here for more information and resources.

PRIA Consultations with Barnett Law Offices

Navigating PRIA requirements can be complex, and non-compliance can have serious consequences for operators and pilots alike. At Barnett Law Offices, our experienced aviation attorneys offer PRIA consultations to assist pilots and operators in understanding and meeting PRIA obligations. From reviewing records to providing guidance on disclosure and compliance, we offer tailored solutions to safeguard your aviation career.

Contact Us Today

Ensure PRIA compliance and protect your aviation career with Barnett Law Offices. Contact us today to schedule a PRIA consultation and navigate PRIA requirements effectively. Don’t let PRIA compliance issues jeopardize your aviation aspirations – let our team guide you towards a secure and successful aviation career.