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An aircraft, with an EASA Certificate of Airworthiness, may not fly unless it has a valid Airworthiness Review Certificate (ARC). This Certificate is issued after a successful Airworthiness Review and has a validity of one year. The review entails a full documented review of the aircraft records and a physical survey of the aircraft. It may be carried out by an appropriately rated CAMO (with Subpart I privileges), an appropriately rated Maintenance Organisation, an approved certifying staff (for ELA1 aircraft), or the IAA.
Aircraft deemed to be in a "controlled environment" can have their ARCs extended twice, without further review, for a period of one year each time, by the CAMO. A controlled environment is one where the aircraft is managed by the same CAMO for 12 months and is maintained by approved organisations. A list of all CAMOs is available here.
ELA1 aircraft (an aeroplane with a MTOM of less than 1,200kg), not used in commercial air transport or commercial operations, may have an ARC issued by the IAA based on a recommendation made by certain certifying staff. The certifying staff must be formally accepted by the IAA. This recommendation shall be based on an airworthiness review carried out in accordance with Part M.A.710 and shall not be issued for more than two (2) consecutive years. Recommendations shall be made on AWSD.F.104C.
All ARCs must be registered with the IAA firstname.lastname@example.org when issued and the appropriate fee paid.
An Airworthiness Review may be anticipated by up to 90 days, without loss of continuity of the ARC, to allow for the physical inspection to be carried out during a maintenance check. This means that the new expiry date will be one year after the previous ARC expiration date.
When an aircraft is imported from outside the EU the initial ARC must be issued by the IAA.