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Step-by-Step Instructions for Drone Registration - PPA Today

Step-by-Step Instructions for Drone Registration

by Lindsey Forson

There is a lot of information floating around right now regarding new FAA regulations for drone or UAS use. We want to clear a few things up for you and give you some helpful tips!

The new regulations released this week from the FAA require the registration of all Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). As of Monday, the FAA launched a very simple online registration process for hobbyist users of small UAS. There is a paper application currently available for commercial users, but it is important to note that commercial use is still only currently permitted for professional photographers who have been granted a Section 333 exemption and are licensed pilots or have exempt licensed pilots operating the UAS.

We expect the FAA to finalize new regulations for business-related use of small UAS during the first half of 2016. The FAA has also said that the online UAS registration system will be expanded to include business-related use by the spring of 2016. If you are using UAS for hobbyist or recreational purposes while awaiting new regulations for business use, be sure to register your UAS with the FAA as soon as possible. Please see our recent coverage (link to last blog post) for more information on the most recent regulatory change.

Here are step-by-step instructions for how to register your UAS after the jump:

(1) Visit the FAA's registration portal at
(2) Choose "Register My Drone."
(3) Enter your email address and create a password.
(4) Verify your email address. You will receive an email from Click on the link provided to verify.
(5) You will then be able to login using the email address and password you provided at
(6) A "System Use Notice" will pop-up on the screen. You will need to agree to the terms.

(7) Once you login, fill out your profile with very basic contact and personal information. Then click "proceed to checkout."

(8) Read and acknowledge the safety guidelines.

(9) Enter payment information. The registration $5.00. If you register prior to January 21, there is no cost. Your registration fee will be refunded automatically. Then confirm the payment.
(10)  Receive your unique registration number which applies to all UAS you own for three years.

(11)  Follow the instructions to mark your UAS with your number. You will receive a registration certificate from the FAA.
(12)  After three years you must re-register.

Please keep in mind that this online system is brand new and is probably currently experiencing an extremely high volume of traffic. Most of the issues have occurred if the user has logged out or the system has timed out. For this reason, we recommend you complete the entire registration process without logging out of the system. The registration only takes about five minutes from start to finish.

Lindsey Forson is PPA's Copyright & Government Affairs Coordinator. She works with members on a daily basis addressing copyright questions and works closely with our CEO to advocate for  professional photographers on Capitol Hill and to keep members informed on the issues that affect their businesses. She's new to Atlanta and spends most of her free time exploring the city (restaurants, markets, parks); spends three nights a week playing soccer and is a huge Auburn fan.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Professional Photographers of America (PPA) published on December 23, 2015 3:55 PM.

Photographer's Night Before Christmas, Crushing the Starving Artists Attitude and Compositional Lines: Our Top 10 Blogs from December 19 - 24 was the previous entry in this blog.

Ask Terri Eddington Anything! is the next entry in this blog.

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