Convention of 19 June 1948
Convention on the International Recognition
of Rights in Aircraft
Whereas the International Civil Aviation Conference, held at Chicago in
November-December 1944, recommended the early adoption of a Convention
dealing with the transfer of title to aircraft,
Whereas it is highly desirable in the interest of the future expansion
of international civil aviation that rights in aircraft be recognised
The undersigned, duly authorized, have agreed, on behalf of their respective
Governments, as follows:
Article I Recognition of rights in aircraft
- 1. The Contracting
States undertake to recognise:
(a) rights of property in aircraft;
(b) rights to acquire aircraft by purchase
coupled with possession of the aircraft;
(c) rights to possession of aircraft under
leases of six months or more;
(d) mortgages, hypotheques and similar rights
in aircraft which are contractually created as security for payment of
provided that such rights
(i) have been constituted in accordance with the law of the Contracting
State in which the aircraft was registered as to nationality at the time
of their constitution, and
(ii) are regularly recorded in a public record of the Contracting
State in which the aircraft is registered as to nationality.
The regularity of successive recordings in different Contracting States
shall be determined in accordance with the law of the State where the
aircraft was registered as to nationality at the time of each recording.
- 2. Nothing in this Convention shall prevent
the recognition of any right in aircraft under the law of any Contracting
State; but Contracting States shall not admit or recognise any right as
taking priority over the rights mentioned in paragraph (1) of this Article.
Article II Recording of rights in aircraft
- 1. All recordings
relating to a given aircraft must appear in the same record.
- 2. Except as otherwise provided in this
Convention, the effects of the recording of any right mentioned in Article
I, paragraph (1), with regard to third parties shall be determined according
to the law of the Contracting State where it is recorded.
- 3. A Contracting State may prohibit the
recording of any right which cannot validly be constituted according to
its national law.
Article III Authorities recording rights in aircraft; provision of information
to the public
- 1. The address of the authority responsible
for maintaining the record must be shown on every aircraft's certificate
of registration as to nationality.
- 2. Any person shall be entitled to receive
from the authority duly certified copies or extracts of the particulars
recorded. Such copies or extracts shall constitute prima facie evidence
of the contents of the record.
- 3. If the law of a Contracting State provides
that the filing of a document for recording shall have the same effect
as the recording, it shall have the same effect for the purposes of this
Convention. In that case, adequate provision shall be made to ensure that
such document is open to the public. .
- 4. Reasonable charges may be made for services
performed by the authority maintaining the record.
Article IV Claims due for salvage or preservation of aircraft
- 1. In the event that any claims in respect
(a) compensation due for salvage of the aircraft,
(b) extraordinary expenses indispensable for
the preservation of the aircraft give rise, under the law of the Contracting
State where the operations of salvage or preservation were terminated,
to a right conferring a charge against the aircraft, such right shall
be recognised by Contracting States and shall take priority over all other
rights in the aircraft.
- 2. The rights enumerated in paragraph (1)
shall be satisfied in the inverse order of the dates of the incidents
in connexion with which they have arisen.
- 3. Any of the said rights may, within three
months from the date of the termination of the salvage or preservation
operations, be noted on the record.
- 4. The said rights shall not be recognised
in other Contracting States after expiration of the three months mentioned
in paragraph (3) unless, within this period,
(a) the right has been noted on the record
in conformity with paragraph (3), and
(b) the amount has been agreed upon or judicial
action on the right has been commenced. As far as judicial action is concerned,
the law of the forum shall determine the contingencies upon which the
three months period may be interrupted or suspended.
- 5. This Article shall apply notwithstanding
the provisions of Article I, paragraph (2).
Article V Priority ranking order
The priority of a right mentioned in Article I, paragraph (1) (d), extends
to all sums thereby secured. However, the amount of interest included
shall not exceed that accrued during the three years prior to the execution
proceedings together with that accrued during the execution proceedings.
Article VI Attachments (seizures) and sale in execution (foreclosure)
In case of attachment or sale of an aircraft in execution, or of any right
therein, the Contracting States shall not be obliged to recognise, as
against the attaching or executing creditor or against the purchaser,
any right mentioned in Article I, paragraph (1), or the transfer of any
such right, if constituted or effected with knowledge of the sale or execution
proceedings by the person against whom the proceedings are directed.
Article VII Law applicable to foreclosure (execution) proceedings
- 1. The proceedings of a sale of an aircraft
in execution shall be determined by the law of the Contracting State where
the sale takes place.
- 2. The following provisions shall however
(a) the date and place of the sale shall be
fixed at least six weeks in advance.
(b) the executing creditor shall supply to the Court or other competent
authority a certified extract of the recordings concerning the aircraft.
He shall give public notice of the sale at the place where the aircraft
is registered as to nationality, in accordance with the law there applicable,
at least one month before the day fixed, and shall concurrently notify
by registered letter, if possible by air mail, the recorded owner and
the holders of recorded rights in the aircraft and of right noted on the
record under Article IV, paragraph (3), according to their addresses as
shown on the record.
- 3. The consequences of failure to observe
the requirements of paragraph (2) shall be as provided by the law of the
Contracting State where the sale takes place. However, any sale taking
place in contravention of the requirements of that paragraph may be annulled
upon demand made within six months from the date of the sale by any person
suffering damage as the result of such contravention.
- 4. No sale in execution can be effected
unless all rights having priority over the claim of the executing creditor
in accordance with this Convention which are established before the competent
authority, are covered by the proceeds of sale or assumed by the purchaser.
- 5. When injury or damage is caused to persons
or property on the surface of the Contracting State where the execution
sale takes place, by any aircraft subject to any right referred to in
Article I held as security for an indebtedness, unless adequate and effective
insurance by a State or an insurance undertaking in any State has been
provided by or on behalf of the operator to cover such injury or damage,
the national law of such Contracting State may provide in case of the
seizure of such aircraft or any other aircraft owned by the same person
and encumbered with any similar right held by the same creditor:
(a) that the provisions of paragraph (4) above
shall have no effect with regard to the person suffering such injury or
damage or his representative if he is an executing creditor;
(b) that any right referred to in Article I
held as security for an indebtedness encumbering the aircraft may not
be set up against any person suffering such injury or damage or his representative
in excess of an amount equal to 80% of the sale price.
In the absence of other limit established by the law of the Contracting
State where the execution sale takes place, the insurance shall be considered
adequate within the meaning of the present paragraph if the amount of
the insurance corresponds to the value when new of the aircraft seized
- 6. Costs legally chargeable under the law
of the Contracting State where the sale takes place, which are incurred
in the common interest of creditors in the course of execution proceedings
leading to sale, shall be paid out of the proceeds of sale before any
claims, including those given preference by Article IV.
Article VIII Effects of a sale in execution (sale after foreclosure)
Sale of an aircraft in execution in conformity with the provisions of
Article VII shall effect the transfer of the property in such aircraft
free from all rights which are not assumed by the purchaser.
Article IX Recording of the transfer of an aircraft
Except in the case of a sale in execution in conformity with the provisions
of Article VII, no transfer of an aircraft from the nationality register
or the record of a Contracting State to that of another Contracting State
shall be made, unless all holders of recorded rights have been satisfied
or consent to the transfer.
Article X Rights in spare parts of the aircraft
- 1. If a recorded right in an aircraft of
the nature specified in Article I, and held as security for the payment
of an indebtedness, extends, in conformity with the law of the Contracting
State where the aircraft is registered, to spare parts stored in a specified
place or places, such right shall be recognised by all Contracting States,
as long as the spare parts remain in the place or places specified, provided
that, an appropriate public notice, specifying the description of the
right, the name and address of the holder of this right and the record
in which such right is, recorded, is exhibited at the place where the
spare parts are located, so as to give due notification to third parties
that such spare parts are encumbered.
- 2. A statement indicating the character
and the approximate number of such spare parts shall be annexed to or
included in the recorded document. Such parts may be replaced by similar
parts without affecting the right of the creditor.
- 3. The provisions of Article VII, paragraphs
(1) and (4), and of Article VIII shall apply to a sale of spare parts
in execution. However, where the executing creditor is an unsecured creditor,
paragraph 4 of Article VII in its application to such a sale shall be
construed so as to permit the sale to take place if a bid is received
in an amount not less than two-thirds of the value of the spare parts
as determined by experts appointed by the authority responsible for the
sale. Further, in the distribution of the proceeds of sale, the competent
authority may, in order to provide for the claim of the executing creditor,
limit the amount payable to holders of prior rights to two-thirds of such
proceeds of sale after payment of the costs referred to in Article VII,
- 4. For the purpose of this Article the term
" spare parts " means parts of aircraft, engines, propellers,
radio apparatus, instruments, appliances, furnishings, parts of any of
the foregoing, and generally any other articles of whatever description
maintained for installation in aircraft in substitution for parts or articles
Article XI Application of the Geneva Convention
- 1. The provisions of this Convention shall
in each Contracting State apply to all aircraft registered as to nationality
in another Contracting State.
- 2. Each Contracting State shall also apply
to aircraft there registered as to nationality:
(a) the provisions of Articles II, III, IX,
(b) the provisions of Article IV, unless the
salvage or preservation operations have been terminated within its own
Article XII Rules of law on immigration, customs or air navigations
Nothing in this Convention shall prejudice the right of any Contracting
State to enforce against an aircraft its national laws relating to immigration,
customs or air navigation.
Article XIII Aircraft used in military, customs or police services
This Convention shall not apply to aircraft used in military, customs
or police services.
Article XIV Contact between the judicial and administrative authorities
of the Contracting States
For the purpose of this Convention, the competent judicial and administrative
authorities of the Contracting States may, subject to any contrary provision
in their national law, correspond directly with each other.
Article XV Implementation of the Geneva Convention in national law
The Contracting States shall take such measures as are necessary for the
fulfilment of the provisions of this Convention and shall forthwith inform
the Secretary General of the International Civil Aviation Organization
of these measures.
Article XVI Definition of ‘aircraft’
For the purposes of this Convention the term " aircraft " shall
include the airframe, engines, propellers, radio apparatus, and all other
articles intended for use in the aircraft whether installed therein or
temporarily separated therefrom.
Article XVII Contracting State responsible for foreign relations of another
If a separate register of aircraft for purposes of nationality is maintained
in any territory for whose foreign relations a Contracting State is responsible,
references in this Convention to the law of the Contracting State shall
be construed as references to the law of that territory.
Article XVIII Geneva Convention open for other States to participate
This Convention shall remain open for signature until it comes into force
in accordance with the provisions of Article XX.
Article XIX Ratification
- 1. This Convention shall be subject to ratification
by the signatory States.
- 2. The instruments of ratification shall
be deposited in the archives of the International Civil Aviation Organization
which shall give notice of the date of deposit to each of the signatory
and adhering states.
Article XX Date on which the Geneva Convention enters into force between
(two) Contracting States
- 1. As soon as two of the signatory States
have deposited their instruments of ratification of this Convention, it
shall come into force between them on the ninetieth day after the date
of the deposit of the second instrument of ratification. It shall come
into force, for each State which deposits its instrument of ratification
after that date, on the ninetieth day after the deposit of its instrument
- 2. The International Civil Aviation Organization
shall give notice to each signatory State of the date on which this Convention
comes into force.
- 3. As soon as this Convention comes into
force, it shall be registered with the United Nations by the Secretary
General of the International Civil Aviation Organization.
Article XXI Geneva Convention is open for adherence by non-signatory States
- 1. This Convention shall, after it has come
into force, be open for adherence by non-signatory States.
- 2. Adherence shall be effected by the deposit
of an instrument of adherence in the archives of the International Civil
Aviation Organization, which shall give notice of the date of the deposit
to each signatory and adhering State.
- 3. Adherence shall take effect as from the
ninetieth day after the date of the deposit of the instrument of adherence
in the archives of the International Civil Aviation Organization.
Article XXII Denunciation of the Geneva Convention by Contracting States
- 1. Any Contracting State may denounce this
Convention by notification of denunciation to the International Civil
Aviation Organization, which shall give notice of the date of receipt
of such notification to each signatory and adhering State.
- 2. Denunciation shall take effect six months
after the date of receipt by the International Civil Aviation Organization
of the notification of denunciation.
Article XXIII Declaration excluding the applicability of the Geneva Convention
in regard of certain territories
- 1. Any State may at the time of deposit
of its instrument of ratification or adherence, declare that its acceptance
of this Convention does not apply to any one or more of the territories
for the foreign relations of which such State is responsible.
- 2. The International Civil Aviation Organization
shall give notice of any such declaration to each signatory and adhering
- 3. With the exception of territories in
respect of which a declaration has been made in accordance with paragraph
(1) of this Article, this Convention shall apply to all territories for
the foreign relations of which a Contracting State is responsible.
- 4. Any State may adhere to this Convention
separately on behalf of all or any of the territories regarding which
it has made a declaration in accordance with paragraph (1) of this Article
and the provisions of paragraphs (2) and (3) of Article XXI shall apply
to such adherence.
- 5. Any Contracting State may denounce this
Convention, in accordance with the provisions of Article XXII, separately
for all or any of the territories for the foreign relations of which such
State is responsible.
In witness whereof the undersigned Plenipotentiaries, having been duly
authorized, have signed this Convention.