Aviation Law

Expert guidance in all aspects of aviation law from certificate defense to injury cases and more.

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Colorado Springs

(719) 309-3000

Grand Junction

(970) 287-1173
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How Our Aviation Lawyers Can Help You

Aviation law is a highly technical field that requires specific industry knowledge. At Ramos Law, our attorneys have experience handling all types of aviation legal matters and can provide you with the superior representation you deserve.

Our aviation attorneys represent pilots, mechanics, operators, air traffic controllers, aviation businesses, airports, passengers, etc. before the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and other legal settings. We regularly consult with operators and affected parties in matters of agency investigation as well as regulatory reporting and compliance.

We are intimately familiar with the legal issues individuals and businesses in the aviation world face. You can trust our wealth of knowledge to guide you through any and all situations! Contact Ramos Law as soon as possible so we can provide an evaluation of your situation.

Aviation Law Expertise

Joseph LoRusso heads up our aviation law department. After attending the United States Air Force Academy and graduating from Metro State University of Denver, he received his Juris Doctorate at Washburn University School of Law in Topeka, Kansas. Joseph is passionate about aviation and is an active pilot. As a pilot, Joseph provides transition training in tailwheel bush aircraft; he airshows in a handful of warbirds; he crews an atmospheric research Learjet; and he remains current in a mix of Citations and Learjets. Prior to law school, Joseph founded and owned northern Colorado’s premier flight school, and while instructing there, he also worked as an aviation broker for both jet and prop airplanes.

Experience is important when choosing an attorney for your aviation law matter. The entire team at our personal injury law firm in Colorado and Arizona provides the highest level of legal service and is dedicated to helping you navigate your complex situation to achieve the best results possible.

Our expertise in aviation law includes:

  • Pilot Certificate Defense
  • FAA Administrative Actions
  • Civil Penalties
  • NTSB Appeals
  • Aviation Crashes
  • And more!

Our Aviation Attorneys Can Handle:

Many pilots attempt FAA medical applications without professional help and end up submitting inadequate records leading to denial. We at Ramos Law have the resources to assist pilots in navigating this complicated process and have no problem taking on tough certification issues such as alcohol and substance abuse diagnoses, ADHD, anxiety/depression, PTSD, cancer treatment, sleep apnea, and cognitive disorders. We are prepared to aggressively advocate for you and put you in the best position to obtain or retain your FAA pilot medical certificate. Our attorneys can effectively represent you, guide you through negotiation, and provide legal services as well as research and appropriate reporting. If further evaluations are required, we can assist in preparing you to increase the likelihood of a good result. We understand the FAA’s requirements and work to ensure the fastest possible return to flying status and minimal medical costs.

We can assist you in handling pilot certificate actions, including the following types of letters from the FAA:

  • Notice Of Proposed Certificate Action
  • Letter of Investigation
  • Emergency Order of Suspension or Revocation

These issues typically have short deadlines and require prompt professional responses. Our aviation lawyers act quickly to protect the rights of the certificate holder. We provide pilots, operators, and mechanics with representation in the earliest stages of pilot certificate actions and throughout the entire hearing and appeal process. This includes representation in communications with all FAA personnel.

As a licensed and active pilot himself, aviation attorney LoRusso understands firsthand the FAA regulations for safety, as well as the technical operation of an aircraft. If an aircraft was involved with your accident or injury, or a loved one is the victim of a crash or incident, Ramos Law can help. We can take on a wide array of aviation accidents and injuries caused by negligence, recklessness, or aircraft malfunction.

Along with being BOTH a board-certified emergency room physician and a licensed attorney. Our Founder, Dr. Joseph Ramos is also an avid pilot. Dr. Ramos’ unique combination of knowledge and skills gives our firm a deep understanding of the life-changing impacts of injuries in the aviation field. Our team has extensive experience helping accident and injury victims obtain compensation to pay for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

A DUI arrest can have severe career implications for pilots. Contact our Colorado and Arizona litigation attorneys right away and let them guide you through the federal law reporting and the 8500-8 disclosures. Since we know how the FAA is likely to respond to a DUI report, we proactively get you the appropriate counseling and evaluations needed and employ experts where necessary. We understand how the FAA reviews pilots with DUI arrests and we can provide you with sound legal advice to help minimize or eliminate the potential pitfalls and place you in the best position in the eyes of the FAA.

If the FAA has sent you a Notice of Proposed Civil Penalty (NPCP) letter, they believe you have violated Federal Aviation Regulations. The letter will include a list of alleged violations the FAA has compiled through an investigative report. Typically, the letter has a response deadline so it is very important to contact an aviation lawyer after receiving the notice.

There are several options in responding to an NPCP, including:

  • Pay the penalty
  • Submit a written answer to the charges
  • Request an informal conference with an FAA attorney, and request a copy of the EIR
  • Request the FAA issue the order, which activates the right to appeal

If the letter is not responded to, the FAA has the authority to issue orders assessing a civil penalty of up to $400,000 against persons other than individuals and small business concerns and up to $50,000 against individuals and small business concerns.

Fortunately, there is an opportunity at the beginning of most enforcement cases for informal procedures, including an informal conference with an FAA attorney. During these informal procedures, an enforcement action can sometimes be resolved. However, this is a narrowly focused area of the law and requires detailed knowledge of 14 CFR Part 13. Our aviation attorneys can provide experienced representation and offer legal counsel on any settlement offers. We take into account all factors including the risks and expenses of litigation to your career or business and provide expert advice and guidance.

An NPCP may often stem from a business issue requiring detailed knowledge of aviation operations. Since our aviation department head is also a pilot, we have the knowledge and experience to effectively advocate for you. Our team can represent you throughout the entire process, including responding to the investigation and NPCP letters, conducting an informal conference with FAA attorneys, and handling appeals before a DOT administrative law judge, the NTSB, and the U.S. appellate courts.

If your FAA medical certificate has been denied or you are faced with certificate action such as an Emergency Order of Suspension or an Emergency Order of Revocation, you have the right to appeal the action. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) serves as the ‘court of appeals’ and conducts an objective review of the evidentiary record. The NTSB is completely independent from the FAA and Department of Transportation (DOT).

The NTSB Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) conducts a formal hearing without a jury to review evidence and render a decision. The FAA Administrator is represented by an attorney and bears the burden of proving the charges alleged in its order — where you may offer evidence in defense. However, you bear the burden of proof in cases involving certificate denials. In most cases, the ALJ will issue an initial decision at the conclusion of the hearing. It is not mandatory for you to have legal representation but it is highly advised by the NTSB.

The aviation attorneys at Ramos Law have your best interests in mind and can provide you with experienced counsel throughout the NTSB appeal process, whether it be a certificate action, medical denial, or certificate modification. We can help you understand all of your available options when defending your certificates and ensure response deadlines are met, the appropriate legal filings are made, and attendance at the hearing. Our aviation lawyers know exactly how to present evidence and deliver effective oral arguments in your defense. Our aviation attorneys have extensive experience throughout the entire appeal process, hearings before an NTSB Administrative Law Judge, and dealing with the full NTSB five-member board.

In The News

HIMS Update

I last discussed the HIMS program in July of 2020.  My article, titled “Lifetime Monitoring: A Warning To Airmen,” followed the FAA’s policy change to establish lifetime monitoring for those in the HIMS program, and those yet to be in the HIMS Program.


As aviation attorneys who handle pilot certificate matters on a daily basis, it has come to our attention that a majority of pilots are unaware of some recent changes and are, therefore, primed to be blindsided by the FAA’s recent escalation of lifetime monitoring for pilots dealing with…

A Passion for Flying Powers Joe LoRusso’s Aviation Law Specialty

Joe LoRusso is an attorney who practices in a niche within a niche. The aviation lawyer focuses on pilot certificate defense, which he says has a simple underlying purpose.

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