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Do I need a license for commercial use?

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I'm looking at doing a few jobs with my mavic pro, does anyone know the exact license needed for the UK?

I'm a member of the BMFA so my insurance is sorted, but I know this is void for commericial work.

Has anyone ever been caught doing jobs without a license, or know anyone who has, and what was the fine etc?

Thanks

Will
 

Ping^Spike

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You'll need a PfCO mate.

No commercial insurance will be valid without one.

I'm not sure anyone would hire you for professional work without a valid PfCO?
 

gnirtS

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As above, you need a valid PfCO which is available at an extortionate cost from some places in the UK.
Nobody should hire you without it at all. The UK doesnt make it easy or cheap for "professional" drone use price wise.
 
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Wow! Thats very extortionate. Well I'm looking at small projects so I dont get many questions to be honest.

Has anyone done this course before? What the hell are you paying the £1,500 for?

An example... if I do a commerical job, dont get paid, but they share it on social media/youtube, what happens?
 

gnirtS

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You get very little for your £1500. Basic training and rules of airmanship and so on. Broadly equivalent to the FAA one costing 10% of the price in the states. The UK enjoys fleecing people for cash. But sadly, its the law.
If you do a commercial jon you need a PfCO end of story. Payment OR payment in kind (ad revenue, youtube money etc) still counts. If theres any direct or indirect commercial gain you need it.
 
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matth1000

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I wouldn't try and cut corners over technicalities.
In the end if you crash your uav for what ever reason, you will be liable.
I live in australia, I have my RePL for commercial use through work to fly multirotors up to 25kg and fixed wing up to 7kgs but im only insured when flying for work. I started doing little realestate jobs with my mavic and even registered as a business but soon came to the conclusion thats its not worth it. If something happens and someone is injured, I could be potentially paying for that mistake the rest of my life.
If you really want to fly uavs for a living either over do the licences and insurances and cover your *** in every way or work for someone that has all the licenses and insurences all ready sorted.
I took the latter option and now get to fly a DJI matrice with LiDAR and a sirrus Mavinci pro daily and loving it.
 
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Hmm. In my instance I make films, drone clips are only small edits. Its just quite frustrating as £1,500 is an awful lot. Perhaps it makes drone work more exclusive once youre licensed....

Just so I'm clear, it just means my insurance will be void? Or will I get fined?
 

matth1000

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Dont know how it works over there but over here if you are not licensed then you cant get insurance.
Im also a member of an RC club but that insrance doesnt cover me out side of my rc clubs field.
I just couldn't be bothered paying for licences and insurance and risking having to pay when something eventully happens.
We use $50 000 plus uavs at work and they still fall out of the sky.
Mavic pros are just toys compared to my work ones so no reason why they won't do the same.

No offence to mavic owners, i have one as well.
But when compared to the matrice with Lidar that is worth over $200 000 you get my drift.

I just think that living the rest of my life paying for someone elses medical bills all because i wanted to earn a couple hundred dollars taking pictures of peoples houses is not really worth the risk.

I would strongly agree working for uav company first and then see how many rules and regs there are then decide if u want to look after all that and fly the uav as well. I think it would suck the fun out of it really quick.

I know i sound like a pesimist but I have been through this.
I used to fly rc planes helicopters and multirotors all the time on the weekend then when I started doing it at work i thought all my birthdays had come at once.

About 3 months later im lucky if I get down to my RC club once a month. Now I hardly go at all. I couldnt imagine doing all the paper work that goes with every flight. Lucky my boss does all that.
 
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gnirtS

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Hmm. In my instance I make films, drone clips are only small edits. Its just quite frustrating as £1,500 is an awful lot. Perhaps it makes drone work more exclusive once youre licensed....

Just so I'm clear, it just means my insurance will be void? Or will I get fined?

You'll be operating illegally. Which means (i) insurance voice and (ii) are breaking the law regarding the CAA and can be prosecuted and fined. They have fined and prosecuted people before.

If you're making money directly or indirectly you need a PfCO. And that costs (ridiculous) amounts of money.
 

Ping^Spike

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Don't forget, that PfCO cert of yours needs to be renewed each year. As does your insurance.

And heads up, the ops manual paperwork and risk assessments that need to be completed before each flight will, in 99% of all commercial jobs, take longer to complete and file than the flight itself actually takes :rolleyes:
 

matth1000

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Don't forget, that PfCO cert of yours needs to be renewed each year. As does your insurance.

And heads up, the ops manual paperwork and risk assessments that need to be completed before each flight will, in 99% of all commercial jobs, take longer to complete and file than the flight itself actually takes :rolleyes:
I can second that. Sometimes my boss and I spend a day coming up with a take off snd landing plan, create a flight plan and then weather checks then safety and risk assessment then the next day we go and do a 15 minute flight.
16 hours of prep between 2 people for a half day job and only 15 minutes of actual flight time.

Try and keep it as a hobby as much as you can.
You will enjoy yourself much more.
 
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Its a shame they dont do licenses specifically for 'toy' drones like the mavic pro. I cant believe the cerificate needs to be renewed each year, thats outrageous. I totally understand the safety preacutions for the license, but it seems as though theyre rinsing people for money here...

A 200k drone? Wow that must be huge.... the license is totally justifable in that case.

So if you do commercial work and it gets posted on youtube without monetization, are there examples where CAA have made them take the video down, fined or prosecuted? As my research tells me theyre really focused on bigger corporations.. I'm just curious at all the youtubers posting drone footage. I wonder how many actually get approached because I cant imagine many of them are qualified for commerical work.
 

gnirtS

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Well if its not "monetised" (not even a real word) then its not commercial. If nobody is making any financial or other gain from the footage its amateur and exempt. But if you're suddenly flying to take video in order to gain ad revenue or similar then it is. Fairly simple.
You can post non-commercial footage up without issue as long as you're flying legally (as the guy that flew within 50m of the jubilee rail bridge found out with a £4000 total fine.)
Or recently this guy ( Cops investigate possible criminal drone footage of Britannia Bridge ) with instagram video of a train going over a bridge. So yes, the authorities do check youtube and do warn or prosecute illegal flying.
 

Discobob

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I fly my drone and take photos purely for personal entertainment and no profit whatsoever. If someone sees a photo that I took for my own enjoyment and asked me to sell them a print, where would I stand legally?

Hypothetically, of course.
 
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Well if its not "monetised" (not even a real word) then its not commercial. If nobody is making any financial or other gain from the footage its amateur and exempt. But if you're suddenly flying to take video in order to gain ad revenue or similar then it is. Fairly simple.
You can post non-commercial footage up without issue as long as you're flying legally (as the guy that flew within 50m of the jubilee rail bridge found out with a £4000 total fine.)
Or recently this guy ( Cops investigate possible criminal drone footage of Britannia Bridge ) with instagram video of a train going over a bridge. So yes, the authorities do check youtube and do warn or prosecute illegal flying.

Its a real word, here's the definition if you don't have a dictionary:
monetize | Definition of monetize in English by Oxford Dictionaries

Okay interesting to see them examples. Although there are thousands of 'commerical' drone videos on youtube (monetized and making money from advertising), and I'm pretty sure a lot of them are not licensed. I think if you're flying your drone in a safe environment (as seen on whichever video you post), theyll be less inclined to contact you maybe? E.g. drone footage of an open field vs drone footage in a busy park full of people in london. Thats my opinion anyway...

I will be looking into getting a license though, I'll check out the threads that recommend courses in the UK.
 

matth1000

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Its a shame they dont do licenses specifically for 'toy' drones like the mavic pro. I cant believe the cerificate needs to be renewed each year, thats outrageous. I totally understand the safety preacutions for the license, but it seems as though theyre rinsing people for money here...

A 200k drone? Wow that must be huge.... the license is totally justifable in that case.

So if you do commercial work and it gets posted on youtube without monetization, are there examples where CAA have made them take the video down, fined or prosecuted? As my research tells me theyre really focused on bigger corporations.. I'm just curious at all the youtubers posting drone footage. I wonder how many actually get approached because I cant imagine many of them are qualified for commerical work.
Its just a Matrice with PPK so not that big.
The LiDAR unit is where all the cost is.
 
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