View Full Version : Co-ownership - Help!


Stephjaygee
27th Jun 2006, 14:12
Hi, I'm about to purchase an Archer with 2 other pilots. Any advice on how to administer a bookings system or how to formulate a legally binding 'agreement' and suggestions for what it should contain. We are all first timers and would really appreciate any guidance on the subject. Thanks. Steph x



norihaga
27th Jun 2006, 15:40
Hi, I'm about to purchase an Archer with 2 other pilots. Any advice on how to administer a bookings system or how to formulate a legally binding 'agreement' and suggestions for what it should contain. We are all first timers and would really appreciate any guidance on the subject. Thanks. Steph x

Well, although I'm not familiar with the exact parameters of the statute of frauds in English law, I'm willing to bet it should be in writing and signed by each party to be bound.

Rather than going any further, can I offer the friendly suggestion that if you're going to spend a bazillion pounds on an Archer (or even 20,000 or so), you might be well advised to consider the expenditure of a few hours' legal fees to have a competent and experienced solicitor draft an agreement (or review and mark up any document you come up with).

There are probably people out there who have drafted similar agreements, but even if you can't find one, a competent transactional lawyer will be able to help you avoid common pitfalls in drafting that could result in undesirable, expensive or unpleasant outcomes.

You may even wish to get advice about whether it would be wiser to consider incorporating, forming a limited liability entity (LLC,LLP, etc) or a formal partnership structure. That would depend on the costs and the benefits (how effective is the limitation of liability, what are tax implications, what are the reporting requirements, etc.).

If you wouldn't buy a house on a handshake and without the benefit of professional advice, should you really buy an aircraft that way?

Chilli Monster
27th Jun 2006, 17:09
Aircraft booking:

2 Options - either draw lots at the start of the year and then you rotate the weeks accordingly (with maybe 2 weeks in summer), OR

Internet Booking - first come first served (within reason - say you can't book more than 3 months in advance or similar). http://www.aircraftbooking.co.uk is a very good aircraft / licensing management system for not a vast amount of money annually.

Agreement - Sample of a generic one on the AOPA website, or some kind soul here may let you plagiarise theirs (I'm sure I've got one at home if you want to drop me your e-mail address).

gasax
27th Jun 2006, 18:58
If you have to revert to a legal arrangement them perhaps you should not be party to this arrangement?

I have been a member of a large group and the 'committee' spent most of its effort in trying to compile rules and regulations. (the PFA used to have an example document - it may still be available).

At the end of the day the aircradft will probably be grossly underused apart from public and school holidays. In a good group a simple conversation can sort that out. In a group with 'committee types' there will be rules and eventually it will be so difficult that the aircraft will be under utilised even for holidays!

If you know the people work it out. If you don't, try the rules, but the fallback is probably the internet sites.

The end result is acknowledge you are 'sharing' - that means everything will not necessarily go your way. The benefits are reduced cost, the disbenefits are that sometimes things do not work out, the aircraft is not available, not in the right place, not serviceable, not fuelled, whatever.

If you have to resort to the rulebook then it is probably more trouble than it is worth - unless you are ' a committee type'

foxmoth
27th Jun 2006, 20:40
If you have to revert to a legal arrangement them perhaps you should not be party to this arrangement?

I would totaly disagree with this! Whilst you may not need to implement it you should have a legally binding agreement that covers any disagreements. We have this in our group, and though we have never needed to implement it it covers many eventualities including selling shares, availability etc (we have written in a rotating week priority for each member,we have never need to use it, but can see situations where we might need to, so it is there in case we do).

norihaga
27th Jun 2006, 20:51
If you have to revert to a legal arrangement them perhaps you should not be party to this arrangement?


Whether desired or not, a legal "arrangement", that is, a contract, arises by virtue of purchasing the aircraft. I would certainly hope so if I was handing over the large amounts of money involved!

Of course, if the agreed terms aren't recorded in a signed writing, those terms may or may not be enforceable in a court of law. And if you have a dispute or one or more party experiences financial difficulties, you may find yourself up scenic Proverbial Creek without a proverbial.

If you do have a writing governing the parties' various obligations with respect to the aircraft and each other, that helps. And it's even better when that's competently drafted so that the terms intended are clear and enforceable. Professional assistance would be wise, unless this aircraft is extremely cheap or the OP is extremely wealthy.

172driver
27th Jun 2006, 21:12
No idea about the legalities, but for the booking part try www.book-a-plane.com Works a treat.