Feb. 15, 2018

On-demand business aircraft operators are exempt from a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) program that requires air carriers to post significant security, up to $25,000 per passenger, for the removal costs of these individuals at the conclusion of immigration appeals.

William Clark, a member of NBAA’s Regulatory Issues Advisory Group and owner of YYZ Law, represented business aircraft operators in correspondence with the CBSA, when the agency recently began sending letters to foreign business aviation operators for compliance with this program. The correspondence with the CBSA resulted in the agency reverting to its previous position that if the foreign carrier is not making the travel publicly available in the country of origin, then CBSA compliance is not necessary.

“Since the inception of the Transporter Obligations Program, not only have corporate aircraft operated under a dedicated flight department been exempt from the Transporter Obligations Program, but also corporate commercial charter operators authorized under a commercial air service authority from a foreign country,” said Clark. “We are pleased that our representation on behalf of the business aviation industry has been recognized and the exemption restored.”

CBSA officials will follow up by email with foreign carriers that they had identified as being “Business Charter Flight Operators” notifying them of this continuing exemption.

CBSA also indicated that going forward, the determination of the exemption would also be judged on the basis of size of aircraft and frequency of entry into Canada.

The CBSA program places a financial obligation on commercial operators for passengers brought to Canada who are deemed non-eligible for entry upon arrival. Operators must pay for all costs for that individual while they are detained in Canada, and then are obligated if that individual is denied entry to Canada, often a decade later, to remove that individual from Canada.