We consider the owner of an aircraft to be whoever has possession of it for 28 days or longer. Here's how to let us know if that changes.

Remember: If your aircraft is fitted with an ELT, the previous and new owners MUST update the beacons ‘contact’ details. See selling a beacon(external link) and register a beacon(external link) for more information.

To apply for a change of possession (‘ownership’)

To apply for a change of possession, both parties must complete and send us the form found on the reverse side of the existing certificate of registration, or use form 24047/3.

There is an associated fee. See Fees, charges and levies.

24047/3 Notice of change of possession of aircraft [ ]

If the person giving up possession of the aircraft is unavailable, use form 24047/3A Notice of change of possession of aircraft (relinquishing party unavailable) [ ]

We must be notified within 14 days of the date of transfer of possession.

The existing certificate of registration expires on that transfer date.

It’s a breach of s46 of the Civil Aviation Act 1990 to operate an aircraft without a valid certificate of registration. So 28 days after the certificate of registration expires, the aircraft cannot be operated until a new certificate of registration is issued to the new owner.

New owners are advised to check the aircraft’s annual registration fee and participation levy have been paid. These are invoiced annually in July. If the fee and levy are not paid, the aircraft may be deregistered and cannot be operated.

Registration fee and participation levy 

The fee for change of possession is to be paid by the party giving up possession of the aircraft (unless otherwise arranged between the two parties).

If there’s more than one owner, for example a partnership or syndicate, they need to decide who’ll sign the form and become the contact for us.

Maintenance providers and aircraft sales agents cannot sign the form on behalf of the applicant.

For further information, see rules 47.57 and 47.59.

47.57 Change of possession of aircraft

47.59 Operation of aircraft after expiry of certificate


Fit and proper person questionnaire – for new owners

By law, applicants for an aviation document (like a certificate of registration) who are new to the aviation system, must complete a fit and proper person questionnaire.

24047/02 Fit and proper person questionnaire – aircraft registration

You don’t need to do this if you already have an aviation document.

The fit and proper person questionnaire must be completed with an individual's details, even if the aircraft is being registered in the name of a company, syndicate, or partnership.

If there is more than one applicant, for example in a partnership or syndicate, a separate fit and proper person questionnaire must be completed by each member of the partnership or syndicate.

Fit and proper person questionnaires are valid for one year from the date they’re signed.

Fit and proper person process 

Emergency locator transmitter (ELT)

If the aircraft is fitted with an ELT, the contact details will need to be changed with the Rescue Coordination Centre (RCCNZ), see www.beacons.org.nz(external link).

If the RCCNZ is not given the updated contact information, the aircraft must not be flown. See rule 91.529 Aircraft emergency location system (AELS) and ELT.

Change of address

It’s the responsibility of every holder of an aviation document in New Zealand to promptly notify us of any changes to their address or contact details. Their address for service’must be a New Zealand street address.

Address for service 

Aircraft owners need to return the certificate of registration to us to be re-issued with the correct details.

Ask us about aircraft registration

If you have any questions about this topic, use our contact form, or email aircraftregistrar@caa.govt.nz