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Part 107 Waivers

  Part 107 Waivers and Airspace Authorizations

Antonelli Law provides services relating to the airspace, business, and data aspects of unmanned aircraft systems (drones).

Not only was Antonelli Law one of the very first law firms in the country to launch a drone law practice in 2014, but our clients were among the very first to obtain Part 107 nighttime waivers. There is no airspace request too challenging for us. As long as the FAA is willing to consider your request, we can help you. 

This page is directed at UAS operators who wish to obtain FAA permission to fly through a Part 107 Waiver (CoW) and/or Airspace Authorization:

  • during nighttime
  • beyond line of sight (BLOS)
  • flights over people not in the flight crew
  • operating from a moving vehicle or aircraft
  • operating more than one UAS simultaneously
  • operating in certain airspace
  • Altering the operating limitations
Click here to return to the main UAS page.

The FAA released its new Part 107 commercial drone regulation, effective August 29 2016. While the barrier to entry has been lowered, a number of commercial drone operations are not normally allowed under Part 107.

What is the Cost of a BLOS 107 Waiver (107.31)?

The legal fee varies depending on your proposed operations. A ballpark estimate including:

  • Assistance with developing your concept of operations and risk assessment
  • Assisting as liaison with your testing at an FAA test site
  • The actual BLOS waiver request
would be in the $10,000 to $15,000 range and could be much more depending, again, on your proposed operations.

What is the Cost of a "Nighttime" 107 Waiver (107.29)?

The legal fee varies between $500 and $1,500.

What is the Cost of a "Flights Over People" 107 Waiver (107.39)?

The legal fee varies depending on your proposed operations, but a ballpark estimate is $2,500 to $5,000.

Any deviation from the following operating limitations of Part 107 must be approved in advance by the FAA through a Part 107 waiver, also called a Certificate of Waiver (CoW):

•Unmanned aircraft must weigh less than 55 lbs. (25 kg).

•Visual line-of-sight (VLOS) only; the unmanned aircraft must remain within VLOS of the remote pilot in command and the person manipulating the flight controls of the small UAS. Alternatively, the unmanned aircraft must remain within VLOS of the visual observer.

•At all times the small unmanned aircraft must remain close enough to the remote pilot in command and the person manipulating the flight controls of the small UAS for those people to be capable of seeing the aircraft with vision unaided by any device other than corrective lenses.

•Small unmanned aircraft may not operate over any persons not directly participating in the operation, not under a covered structure, and not inside a covered stationary vehicle.

•Daylight -only operations, or civil twilight (30 minutes before official sunrise to 30 minutes after official sunset, local time)with appropriate anti-collision lighting.

•Must yield right of way to other aircraft.

•May use visual observer (VO) but not required.

•First-person view camera cannot satisfy “see-and-avoid” requirement but can be used as long as requirement is satisfied in other ways.

•Maximum ground speed of 100 mph (87 knots).

•Maximum altitude of 400 feet above ground level (AGL) or, if higher than 400 feet AGL, remain within 400 feet of a structure.

•Minimum weather visibility of 3 miles from control station.

•Operations in Class B, C, D and E airspace are allowed with the required ATC permission.

•Operations in Class G airspace are allowed without ATC permission.

•No person may act as a remote pilot in command or VO for more than one unmanned aircraft operation at one time.

•No operations from a moving aircraft.

•No operations from a moving vehicle unless the operation is over a sparsely populated area.

•No careless or reckless operations.

•No carriage of hazardous materials.

Antonelli Law has the experience and expertise to help companies develop the safety plans to satisfy the FAA's regulatory demands for a Section 107.200/107.205 Certificate of Waiver.

Please contact us at 312-201-8310 or email firm Principal Jeffrey Antonelli at

Why Use an Attorney?

Time, accuracy, relationship, fiduciary duty to the client.

We save you time and the work product will be done correctly. Dealing with a complicated regulatory environment can be stressful and mistakes cause delays. Non-attorneys jumping on the "drone bandwagon" seek your business but do not owe you the fiduciary obligations that an attorney does. For example, there are reports of non-attorney consultant companies who engaged in unethical practices doing Section 333 petitions. Not only would we not do that, but our professional ethics rules tell us as licensed professionals that lawyers owe clients duties of honesty, loyalty, and confidentiality. We cannot - and would not - tell your trade secrets to other clients. Non-attorney consultants may not have these legal, fiduciary obligations to you.

In addition, you begin a relationship with experienced attorneys you can turn to for a variety of business and aviation related questions.

What conditions of Part 107 can we obtain a Certificate of Waiver for?

Section 107.205 lists the regulations under Part 107 that are subject to waiver through Section 107.200:

  • 107.25 – Operation from a moving vehicle or aircraft. However, no waiver of this provision will be issued to allow the carriage of property of another by aircraft for compensation or hire.
  • 107.29 – Daylight operation.

  • 107.31 – Visual line of sight aircraft operation. However, no waiver of this provision will be issued to allow the carriage of property of another by aircraft for compensation or hire.

  • 107.33 – Visual observer.

  • 107.35 – Operation of multiple small unmanned aircraft systems.

  • 107.37(a) – Yielding the right of way.

  • 107.39 – Operation over people.

  • 107.41 - Operation in certain airspace.

  • 107.51 – Operating limitations for small unmanned aircraft

For a free initial consultation about petitioning the FAA for Certificate of Waivers under Part 107, Section 333 (UAS over 55 pounds), or other questions use our simple contact form or contact Jeffrey Antonelli at or call us at (312) 201-8310.

Our passion for leading and learning about UAS is second to none.

We Are More Than Just Seasoned Attorneys.

The head of the Drone/UAS Practice Group, Jeffrey Antonelli, has operated drones for years as a hobbyist and currently flies the DJI Inspire. We are well-versed in the utility of many UAVs with respect to their capabilities and suitability for particular industries. One of Jeffrey's hobbyist drone photos was published in AUVSI's Unmanned Systems magazine in a two page spread. Jeffrey is often sought out by national and local media on drone law matters.

Attorney Kate Fletcher is a pilot for one of the world's largest airlines. Attorney Mark Del Bianco is an expert on data privacy and federal rulemaking. Aviation consultant Douglas Marshall is one of the top UAS advisors in the country.


What other UAS services does the group offer?

We offer a wide variety of services and expertise to help clients grow their UAS businesses.  Our professionals can provide advice and representation on federal regulatory matters, state and local regulatory issues, and commercial projects.  In addition, we have experience with consumer privacy and data security matters.

What federal regulatory issues exist once a business has a Part 107 remote pilot certificate, or a Section 333 exemption?

The need for regulatory assistance doesn’t stop once a client has a Part 107 remote pilot certificate or a Section 333 exemption.  We help with business issues, FAA enforcement defense, and   Certificates of Waiver or Authorization (COAs) to enable unique and profitable UAS operations.

How can state and local regulation affect UAS businesses?

The FAA’s failure to enact federal drone regulations in a timely manner has left a legal void that numerous state and local governments are rushing to fill.  Unfortunately, drafters of these state and local regulations are frequently driven by fear and dread of drones, so too often the result is harmful (and often unconstitutional or illegal) restrictions on beneficial uses of drones.  You can see a list of state and local drone laws here and the FAA’s position on these laws here.

UAS services business needs to be aware of the existing and pending regulations in the states and localities in which it is operating or considering operations.  We provide clients with analyses of the effect of existing and proposed laws and, if necessary, representation in challenging laws on constitutional or federal preemption grounds.

What types of commercial projects does the group support?

The group has wide experience in drafting and negotiating commercial agreements for clients in the UAS and related industries, including telecommunications and mobile application development.  Among recent commercial projects we’ve worked on are:

-     purchase agreements for existing UAS services businesses (USB)

-     independent contractor agreements between USBs and (i) pilots, (ii) visual observers and (iii) data analysis engineers

-     template USB/customer agreements

-     joint venture agreements for UAS manufacturers and USBs

-     terms of service and privacy policies for UAS consulting and flight services businesses

Who Has Hired Antonelli Law for UAS?

Above It All Aerial Solutions LLC
Aerial Inspection Resources
Aerial Inventory LLC
AeriFocus LLC
Angle of Attack
Arrow Aerial Precision LLC
Barak Brasil
Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc.
Certified Productions
Digital Magic Productions
Drone Experts
Frontier Geospatial
Fuscoe Engineering
Helios Imaging
Hover Effect LLC
iCam Copters
Indiana Aerial Solutions
Kovar & Associates
LCP 360
Leading Edge Technologies
Major Telecommunications Company*
Nixon Engineering Solutions
North Georgia Drones
NWB Environmental Services
Outrage Media
PIKA International
Richter Studios
Robo Aerial
Seiclone Surveys
Sky Eye Solutions
SkyFly Cinema
Skyway Recon
Snowy Owl Productions LLC
Tough Stump Technologies LLC
Tour Factory
Tower Inspection
UA TacSolutions LLC
Volo Pervidi LLC
Vortex UAS LLC

*Partial Client List Due to Confidentiality


National Client Roster - Map

Section 333 FAQs

Do I Need A Section 333 Grant of Exemption?

If you want to operate commercially as a service, the short answer is yes. For other uses like R&D, research, or law enforcement see this page from the FAA and click on the appropriate category.

Antonelli Law Drone/UAS Practice Group

The Drone/UAS Practice Group at Antonelli Law is a group of attorneys with deep knowledge of law, technology, privacy, and aviation. Our federal practice relating to the rapidly developing commercial "drone"/Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) industry allows us to serve clients nationwide. In addition, our attorneys are licensed in numerous states from California to New York and  in between.  

  • Jeffrey Antonelli, an unmanned aircraft pilot with 15 year's experience in litigation, general counsel, insurance defense and technology 
  • Mark Del Bianco, more than three decades of federal administrative law, antitrust, and technology expertise
  • Kate Fletcher, an active commercial pilot with the world's largest airline as well as attorney
  • Douglas Marshall, aviation consultant, chairs the ASTM F38.02.01 Task Group on Standards for Operations Over People, and serves as a United States delegate to ISO TC 20/SC 16, UAS Subcommittee
  • Melissa Brabender, associate attorney, accomplished federal litigator and counselor
  • Amelia Niemi, associate attorney, graduate of esteemed Intellectual Property program concentration at DePaul College of Law   
  • Barbara Munube, UAS law clerk, LLM in Int'l Aviation Law
  • Olivia Fowler, UAS Client Concierge

Research and support staff include research assistant , an engineering student, and law clerks to keep the Drone/UAS Practice Group stay current with produce supporting research for the DroneLawsBlog as well as our Survey of State Drone Laws.

Whether it is corporate work, privacy concerns, or you want to get a handle on what the FAA is doing and what your company is allowed to do, you will feel comfortable calling a lawyer at Antonelli Law.


Attorney Katie (“Kate”) D. Fletcher is Of Counsel to Antonelli Law’s Drone/UAS Practice Group. Fletcher is an attorney and 737 pilot with one of the world's largest airlines, with more than 10,000 hours of flight experience. She is Type-Rated in the Saab 340, Citation CE-500, DC-9, and Boeing 737, 757 and 767. Fletcher’s aviation experience includes traffic watch in the San Francisco Bay Area, Air Ambulance, flight instruction, and piloting major domestic and international-bound aircraft. She graduated from the University of Warwick with a B.Sc. (Hons) in Economics, and later attended law school at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. She graduated cum laude with a J.D. and an L.L.M. in Taxation.

Attorney Mark Del Bianco is Special Counsel to Antonelli Law’s Drone/UAV Practice Group. Mr. Del Bianco has substantial federal administrative experience, having represented clients in rulemakings and enforcement proceedings (or court reviews) at the DOJ, ITC, FCC, FDA, CPSC, and NHTSA. He has litigation experience ranging from state trial courts to case briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court, and in recent years has litigated the constitutionality of state laws at the intersection of technology and privacy. He also provides transactional and regulatory assistance to a wide array of clients, including fiber networks, satellite service providers, business owners, application developers and cloud services providers. Prior to starting his own practice in 2003, Del Bianco was an attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice and at both large and small firms in Washington D.C., including more than a decade at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP.

Firm principal Jeffrey Antonelli has been general counsel to technology companies and a litigator for more than 15 years. Jeffrey began flying radio controlled aircraft when he turned 40 (a childhood wish) which led to his following "drone" development including first-person viewing (FPV) flight and cinematography. Jeffrey leverages his experience in
business, litigation, intellectual property, insurance law, and employment law to help clients make their way through the exciting but perilous legal and FAA regulatory waters of drone/UAV law.

What Can a Drone Manufacturer or Distributor Get From Antonelli Law?

We can help protect your investment in UAS by:

- Lobbying at the state or federal level

- Preemption litigation
  • Challenging proposed regulations at agency level or in court
  • Filing suit in federal court to invalidate or circumscribe state or local laws
- Drafting template contracts
  • NDAs
  • Consulting agreements
  • Services agreements
- Develop privacy policies and implementation, including cloud services

- Intellectual property protection and litigation
  • Patents
  • Trademarks
  • Copyrights

What Can a Drone User Get From Antonelli Law?

- Defense of investigatory and enforcement actions
- Challenges to warrantless government use of drones to detect regulatory violations
- Challenging proposed regulations at agency level or in court
Analysis of state and local statutes, including federal preemption issues

Some of Our Public Advocacy

Everyone who has an interest in the safe integration of UAS into the national airspace - academics, business people, technologists, hobbyists - has a duty to advocate their views with Congress. Here are a few examples of our efforts:

  • January 28 2016 letter to US Senator Mark Kirk requesting immediate removal of manned pilot requirement for UAS 55 pounds and less in 2016 FAA Reauthorization Bill


    "Whether we call them UASs, UAVs, or drones, these aircraft are an exciting new development in the aviation industry. But they also raise some serious safety and privacy concerns – that we need to address before the FAA licenses these vehicles for broad use in our national airspace."

    - Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Technology

    Laws Applicable to Drone/UAS

    Traditional state laws of tort and privacy apply to drone use, but so will forthcoming FAA regulations on the commercial use of drones, also known as UAVs or UASs.

    The doctrine of federal preemption will likely displace traditional laws when the FAA regulation is specific enough. Legal advice is needed for uncertainties such as : Would use of a drone by the Chicago Police Department to scan the lakefront area for gang activity violate the privacy rights of sunbathers? This may depend more than Illinois' law on drones, but on the forthcoming FAA sUAS regulations.

    Drone/UAV/UAS Background

    The ability to remotely observe areas otherwise inaccessible due to cost, noise, or physical danger make drones - also called unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs - a remarkable technology. However, privacy concerns as well as the possible danger of uncontrolled UAVs, such as loss of signal causing personal injury or property damage, make this a new area for the application of existing laws as well as the opportunity for new laws to be crafted.

    The future opportunities in the United States seem to be both in the small drone category, those 55 pounds and under for very wide commercial and hobbyist applications, as well as the large drone catagory for limited, highly specialized commercial and law enforcement use. Both categories come under the UAS acronym for Unmanned Aerial System.

    The 2013 FAA Annual UAS Roadmap describes the technical and regulatory challenges for UAS use in the national airspace. We expect much more stringent licensing requirements by the FAA for the large drone (UAS) category, quite similar to commercial aviation requirements due to the larger potential for crash impact in terms of property damage and loss of life.

    Drone Laws Blog is the Antonelli Law vehicle for sharing news, insights, and updates to the drone/UAV industry. Check back often for news regarding the swiftly changing state of the law and the Drone/UAS Practice Group of the firm.

    Antonelli Law Press

    Click here for Jeffrey Antonelli's article in RotorDrone Magazine Winter 2015

    Click here for Jeffrey Antonelli's article in RotorDrone Magazine Summer 2014

    What is a Drone? Is it Like the Predator Used by the Military?

    There are many types of drones, with many ranging from small quadcopters less than three feet across with a GoPro camera controlled by a radio control hobbyist, to the Trimble UX5, a five foot wide autonomous drone capable of flying, filming, and landing by itself due to stabilization software, gyros, and pre-programmed GPS waypoints. Much larger drones used by the military include the Navy Triton MQ-4C Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)  and General Atomic's Predator.

    Drone Nomenclature

    UAS - Unmanned Aircraft System
    UAV - Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

    Why a Drone Law practice?

    Click here to reach our Why Drone Law? page and why the firm's  principal, attorney Jeffrey Antonelli, launched the drone law practice in January 2014.

    Press Release

    Click here for the 2014 Press Release of the Drone/UAS Practice Group at Antonelli Law

    35 East Wacker Drive
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    Chicago, IL 60601

    Tel (312) 201-8310

    Please Note: By viewing this website no attorney-client relationship is formed unless you and the firm agree upon and sign an attorney agreement or similar letter agreement. We are not able to act on your behalf or protect your legal interests until that formal agreement is signed. Consult a qualified attorney to obtain legal advice for your particular circumstances. No endorsement is implied to the information, product, or services that may be contained or referred to in the articles or videos linked to in this page or within this website. Illinois does not recognize attorney specialties; no specialties are implied for attorneys of Antonelli Law.


    FAA Releases new Part 107 commercial sUAS regulations.


    EAA Airventure             July 26, 27, 28

    Interdrone                       September 7-9
    Las Vegas


    AUVSI Media Advisory on Antonelli Law exhibiting at Booth 371 AUVSI XPONENTIAL 2016

    AOPA quotes Jeffrey Antonelli on drone law

    Press release on Antonelli Law being selected by DJI Professional User Referral Program

    Jeffrey Antonelli quoted in Popular Mechanics

    Jeffrey Antonelli quoted in Bloomberg Business:
    Drones & Insurance

    Jeffrey Antonelli interviewed by WGN on Chicago Drone Ordinance

    FAA Issues Fact Sheet to State and Local Governments (Preemption)

    Antonelli Law is accepts clients for Part 107 Waivers (Certificate of Waivers) for BLOS, nighttime ops, and flights over people,  special airspace COAs, and privacy policies, terms of service and other business needs. Contact firm principal Jeffrey Antonelli for more information at 312-201-8310.

    New Orleans


    sUSB Expo                   April 27-29
    San Francisco

    Pennsylvania Society
    of Land Surveyors
    Hershey, Pennsylvania

    Drone World Expo         Nov. 17-18
    San Jose

    UAS Summit & Expo     Sept 21-23
    Grand Forks

    Commercial UAV Expo  Oct 5-7
    Las Vegas

    SAR City                         Oct 9-11 Barstow


    Jeffrey Antonelli quoted by The Daily Dot

    Jeffrey Antonelli appears on Silicon Valley Business Journal

    Jeffrey Antonelli interviewed by NPR on Chicago Drone Ordinance

    Jeffrey Antonelli appears on Chicago Tonight discussing drones



    Jeffrey Antonelli panelist at Law & Innovation: Rise of Drones, Navigant & American Bar Association

    Antonelli Law at DePaul Law Review Symposium on UAS

    Antonelli Law in DC Independent Film Festival

    Antonelli Law hosts AUVSI Heartland chapter meeting 

    Antonelli Law at Illinois GIS 

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    Presented by the American Bar Association Section of Litigation and Navigant

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    Antonelli Law gives Continuing Legal Education seminar on commercial drones at Chicago Bar Association

    Antonelli Law speaks at DePaul Law Review Symposium on UAS

    Jeffrey Antonelli and Mark Del Bianco on drone panel at DC Independent Film Festival Summit on the Hill

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