Pilot and Mechanic Registration No Longer Required in Washington State
Index for this page
Aircraft Registration Information
Aircraft Registration Form
Aircraft Registration Laws and Regulations
For Municipalities and Port Districts
How Many Aircraft are Registered in Washington State?
Does Washington State have an Aircraft Registration Program?
Yes. Aircraft registration fees go directly to support WSDOT Aviation’s airport preservation, maintenance and improvement programs, education outreach, and air search and rescue operations. Registrations are on a calendar year basis (January 1 to December 31). Aircraft registration is required by Washington State law (R.C.W. 47.68.250).
For Aircraft Registration Renewals
How To Renew Online
- For aircraft registration annual renewals, please use the ID and PIN you received in the mail with your renewal notice.
- Go to the secure online registration web page.
- Follow the procedures. (You can personalize your account at this point.)
- Submit your form with your credit card information.
How To Renew By Mail
- Send your renewal notice and a check made payable to WSDOT to: 18204 59th Dr NE, Suite B, Arlington, WA 98223
How To Renew In Person (Cash or Checks Only)
- Go to WSDOT Aviation office located at: 18204 59th Dr NE, Suite B, Arlington, WA 98223
- If you fly in, we are at the Arlington Airport Office.
First Time Registering or New Washington Resident
- New registrants and new Washington residents must first pay any sales taxes due on the aircraft to the Washington State Department of Revenue. They will issue you a Declaration of Use Tax when your tax obligation has been satisfied. Washington State Department of Revenue Use Tax information
- Contact our office (within Washington State toll free (800) 552-0666) to find out the current registration fee due. The fee is different for different categories of aircraft such as single engine, multi, jet, helicopter etc. Also the fee is on a calendar year basis and is prorated for the remaining months of the current year.
- If you want to register online, WSDOT Aviation will send you a letter with your ID and PIN number.
- If you prefer to register by mail, please send COPIES (DO NOT SEND ORIGINALS) of your Declaration of Use Tax, FAA Temporary Registration showing new owner, and bill of sale if available.
Place your aircraft registration card in your aircraft. Renewal notices are mailed in December. Responsibility of renewal lies with the owner even if a notice is not received.
Aircraft registration does not apply to:
- An aircraft owned by and used exclusively in the service of any government or any political subdivision thereof, including the government of the United States, any state, territory, or possession of the United States, or the District of Columbia, which is not engaged in carrying persons or property for commercial purposes.
- An aircraft registered under the laws of a foreign country.
- An aircraft which is owned by a nonresident and registered in another state: Provided, that if said aircraft shall remain in and/or be based in this state for a period of ninety days or longer it shall not be exempt under this section.
- An aircraft engaged principally in commercial flying constituting an act of interstate or foreign commerce.
- An aircraft owned by the commercial manufacturer thereof while being operated for test or experimental purposes, or for the purpose of training crews for purchasers of the aircraft.
- An aircraft being held for sale, exchange, delivery, test, or demonstration purposes solely as stock in trade of an aircraft dealer licensed under Title 14 RCW.
What if my aircraft is out of annual? Does it have to be registered?
No, if your aircraft is out of annual and will not be flown during the current year, you can request an exemption form. Once this form is returned, the information is included in the database under your N number. When enforcement agencies check aircraft for registration, they will know why an aircraft does not have a decal. The exemption needs to be requested each year the aircraft is not flown.
I just moved to Washington. When do I have to register my aircraft?
You have 90 days after becoming a resident to register your aircraft.
I'm a Washington resident and I just purchased an aircraft.
Does an experimental/home built aircraft have to be registered?
An experimental/homebuilt aircraft must be registered with the state, unless any one of the above exemptions apply.
What about Washington State residents with aircraft based out-of-state?
Aircraft based out-of-state would be exempt from Washington State registration. See #3 .
Where does the money go?
The registration fee is broken down into two parts, a $15.00 registration/filing fee and an Excise Tax based on the type of aircraft. The entire registration/filing fee is credited to the Aviation Account, which is a dedicated fund. This money is only used for aviation purposes. Specifically, $7.00 of the $15.00 goes directly to state airport maintenance.Ten percent of the excise tax collected is also credited to the Aviation Account for aviation purposes. The remainder goes into the General Fund and is not returned to Aviation.
Aircraft Sold or Destroyed
Use these three steps to remove your name from the Federal government and the State of Washington.
1. Remove your Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Aircraft Certificate of Aircraft Registration 8050-3 Certificate from the aircraft.
2. On the backside of your Certificate of Aircraft Registration, AC Form 8050-3 check the appropriate box to cancel your registration.
3. Return your Certificate of Aircraft Registration, AC Form 8050-3 back to the FAA:
FAA Aircraft Registration
PO Box 25504
Oklahoma City, OK 73125-050
4. WSDOT Aviation must be notified within 30 days of any changes to your registration information. Please complete and submit this aircraft registration exemption request form and email a copy of the bill of sale to email@example.com or mail the copy of the bill of sale to:
18204 59th Dr. NE, Suite B
Arlington, WA 98223
5. Complete the online exemption form.
If your aircraft is destroyed or sold, please notify WSDOT Aviation within 30 days.
How much is my aircraft registration?
Newest Aircraft Registration Fee Schedule
Download the Aircraft Registration Form (pdf 41 kb).
Place this form in an envelope with your check, made payable to WSDOT, and send to:
18204 59th Dr NE, Suite B
Arlington, WA 98223
Sec. 4RCW 47.68.250 and 1999 c 302 s 2 are each amended to read as follows: Every aircraft shall be registered with the department for each calendar year in which the aircraft is operated or is based within this state. A fee of fifteen dollars shall be charged for each such registration and each annual renewal thereof. Possession of the appropriate effective federal certificate, permit, rating, or license relating to ownership and airworthiness of the aircraft, and payment of the excise tax imposed by Title 82 RCW for the privilege of using the aircraft within this state during the year for which the registration is sought, and payment of the registration fee required by this section shall be the only requisites for registration of an aircraft under this section. The registration fee imposed by this section shall be payable to and collected by the secretary. The fee for any calendar year must be paid during the month of January, and shall be collected by the secretary at the time of the collection by him or her of the said excise tax. If the secretary is satisfied that the requirements for registration of the aircraft have been met, he or she shall thereupon issue to the owner of the aircraft a certificate of registration therefor. The secretary shall pay to the state treasurer the registration fees collected under this section, which registration fees shall be credited to the aeronautics account in the transportation fund. It shall not be necessary for the registrant to provide the secretary with originals or copies of federal certificates, permits, ratings, or licenses. The secretary shall issue certificates of registration, or such other evidences of registration or payment of fees as he or she may deem proper; and in connection therewith may prescribe requirements for the possession and exhibition of such certificates or other evidences. The provisions of this section shall not apply to:
- An aircraft owned by and used exclusively in the service of any government or any political subdivision thereof, including the government of the United States, any state, territory, or possession of the United States, or the District of Columbia, which is not engaged in carrying persons or property for commercial purposes;
- An aircraft registered under the laws of a foreign country;
- An aircraft which is owned by a nonresident and registered in another state: PROVIDED, That if said aircraft shall remain in and/or be based in this state for a period of ninety days or longer it shall not be exempt under this section;
- An aircraft engaged principally in commercial flying constituting an act of interstate or foreign commerce;
- An aircraft owned by the commercial manufacturer thereof while being operated for test or experimental purposes, or for the purpose of training crews for purchasers of the aircraft;
- An aircraft being held for sale, exchange, delivery, test, or demonstration purposes solely as stock in trade of an aircraft dealer licensed under Title 14 RCW;
- An aircraft based within the state that is in an unairworthy condition, is not operated within the registration period, and has obtained a written exemption issued by the secretary.
The secretary shall be notified within thirty days of any change in ownership of a registered aircraft. The notification shall contain the N, NC, NR, NL, or NX number of the aircraft, the full name and address of the former owner, and the full name and address of the new owner. For failure to so notify the secretary, the registration of that aircraft may be canceled by the secretary, subject to reinstatement upon application and payment of a reinstatement fee of ten dollars by the new owner. A municipality or port district that owns, operates, or leases an airport, as defined in RCW 47.68.020, with the intent to operate, shall require from an aircraft owner proof of aircraft registration as a condition of leasing or selling tiedown or hanger space for an aircraft. It is the responsibility of the lessee or purchaser to register the aircraft. The airport shall work with WSDOT Aviation to assist in its efforts to register aircraft by providing information about based aircraft on an annual basis as requested by the division.
Late Aircraft Registration Penalties
Penalties for violations.
(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) of this section, any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter, or any of the rules, regulations, or orders issued pursuant thereto, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
(2)(a) Any person violating any of the provisions of RCW 47.68.220, 47.68.230, or 47.68.255 is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
(b) In addition to, or in lieu of, the penalties provided in this section, or as a condition to the suspension of a sentence which may be imposed pursuant thereto, for violations of RCW 47.68.220 and 47.68.230, the court in its discretion may prohibit the violator from operating an aircraft within the state for such period as it may determine but not to exceed one year. Violation of the duly imposed prohibition of the court may be treated as a separate offense under this section or as a contempt of court.
(3) In addition to the provisions of subsections (1) and (2) of this section, failure to register an aircraft, as required by this chapter is subject to the following civil penalties:
(a) If the aircraft registration is sixty days to one hundred nineteen days past due, the civil penalty is one hundred dollars.
(b) If the aircraft registration is one hundred twenty days to one hundred eighty days past due, the civil penalty is two hundred dollars.
(c) If the aircraft registration is over one hundred eighty days past due, the civil penalty is four hundred dollars.
(4) The revenue from penalties prescribed in subsection (3) of this section must be deposited into the aeronautics account under RCW 82.42.090.
What are the conditions for leasing or selling hangar or tie-down space in regards to state aircraft registration?
The requirements for leasing or selling hangar or tie-down space in regards to state aircraft registration are found under RCW 47.68.250, which is as follows: A municipality or port district that owns, operates, or leases an airport, as defined in RCW 47.68.020, with the intent to operate, shall require from an aircraft owner proof of aircraft registration as a condition of leasing or selling tiedown or hangar space for an aircraft. It is the responsibility of the lessee or purchaser to register the aircraft. The airport shall work with WSDOT Aviation to assist in its efforts to register aircraft by providing information about based aircraft on an annual basis as requested by the division.
Is a municipality or port district required to see proof of state aircraft registration before leasing/selling hangar/tie-down space for aircraft?
Yes, according to state law, the aircraft owner is required to show proof of state aircraft registration before a municipality or port district can lease or sell hangar or tie-down space to them.
Is a municipality or port district required to supply tenant lists to WSDOT Aviation?
Yes, state law requires that municipalities and port districts assist WSDOT Aviation by providing based aircraft information on an annual basis. This information should be given upon request by WSDOT Aviation.
If a potential tenant does not have a valid state aircraft registration, what should they do?
If your potential tenant does not have a valid state aircraft registration, please ask them to contact WSDOT Aviation.
What if an aircraft is exempt from state registration?
If an aircraft is exempt from state registration, the owner should have completed an aircraft exemption form. Please contact WSDOT Aviation to confirm that an exemption was received.