The Department of Transportation passed a law in December 2015 which made it mandatory for non-commercial drones to be registered. The FAA revealed in March that more than 100,000 hobby drone owners had registered their drones in the first three months of the year. The law was later struck down by a Washington, D.C. court so hobby drone owners could legally fly them without any registration. They won’t be pleased to find out that registrations are now mandatory once again.
The FAA originally charged a $5 registration fee which it started returning once the previous law was struck down. Those who were refunded will probably have to go through the registration process once again. All new drone owners will have to get their drones registered as well. The full rules concerning registration can be found on the FAA’s website.
President Trump has signed the National Defense Authorization Act for 2018. The law reinstates the registration requirement for civilian drones that weigh between 0.5lbs and 55lbs.
If owners want to fly them legally, they will need to register them with the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA has said in a statement that “We welcome the reinstatement of registration rules for all small unmanned aircraft,” adding that this is going to “promote safe and responsible drone operation.”