“Special authorizations,” a collective term for certain specific authorizations from the FAA — in the form of (a) Letters of Authorization (LOAs) or Letters of Deviation (LODAs) primarily for non-commercial operators, (b) Operations Specifications (OpSpecs) for commercial and certain other operators, and (c) Management Specifications (MSpecs) for fractional operators — are a fact of life for today’s aircraft operators. Obtaining special authorizations, including figuring out which ones you need and how to get them, can be one of the most confusing tasks for the professional aviation manager to tackle.

The purpose of this resource is not to give a definitive list of required authorizations and corresponding forms, items which can change from day to day. Instead, it is intended to provide background information on the origins of special authorizations, advice on where to find information on specific authorizations and examples of best practices aviation managers (from single-pilot operations to multi-crew flight departments) can use to obtain the appropriate authorizations as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Download the PDF of “Simplifying Special Authorizations” (757 KB).