Contributor: Karanović & Partners

Author: Ana Lučić, Ana Pavlović

1. Which authority is in charge of the civil aviation registry in Montenegro? Does Montenegro use a single-registry system or is there a dual-registry system in place?

There is no specific legislation in Montenegro regulating specifically the use of aviation documents executed with the use of digital platforms or any electronic signatures. Electronic signing in Montenegro is principally governed by the Law on Electronic Identification and Electronic Signature (“E-Signature Law”), the Law on Electronic Documents (“E- Document Law”) that regulates the use of electronic documents in legal transactions, its use before competent authorities and courts. These Laws also apply to all public bodies, including the Civil Aviation Authority (“CAA”).

On the other hand, there is no Law in Montenegro that specifically regulates the use of digital platforms.

2. Is the registry an operator registry or an owner registry (or both)?

The E-signature Law defines three types of e-signatures: (i) simple, (ii) advanced, and (iii) qualified electronic signature; however, only a qualified electronic signature ensures full equivalence in terms of validity and enforceability with that of a handwritten/wet ink signature. Depending on the type of signature and purpose for which it is used, different requirements are needed. In terms of e-signatures, specific requirements prescribed by law are only needed for qualified ones, as it provides the highest level of reliability and certainty.

Qualified electronic signatures issued by the authorized bodies in the countries with which Montenegro has entered into the relevant bilateral agreements should have the same legal effect as the qualified electronic signatures issued by the Montenegrin Authorized Bodies. However, at the moment, the bilateral agreements are only concluded with Serbia and Northern Macedonia.

3. What are the requirements and documentation to register an aircraft in Montenegro? Include references to formalities such as notarisation, legalization, etc.

The registers that are available in electronic form on the website of the CAA are:

Register of civil aircraft; List of operators of unmanned aircraft systems. The Register of civil aircraft contains data about the aircraft, aircraft operator, aircraft owner and encumbrances on the aircraft. However, the documentation and specifics about these data are not accessible via the website.

4. What fees are payable to register an aircraft in Montenegro?

At the moment, CAA does not allow the submission of a registration application and supporting documentation electronically, only through the standard procedure – via the Post office or directly to the CAA.

5. Are there any weight and/or maximum age restrictions to register an aircraft in Montenegro?

As we previously pointed out, there are no special regulations regarding the use of electronic signatures, which are only applied before the CAA. However, when speaking about the general use of documents signed with an electronic signature, please note the following:

In the case when it is specifically required by the local laws that a certain document/agreement should be hand-signed, as an equivalent, it is mandatory to use only qualified e-signature (e.g., for license agreements, filings with state bodies or agencies). In all other situations, when the local laws do not prescribe any form or do not require a hand-signed signature, there are no formal obstacles to using the other two types of e-signatures.

The use of e-signature is not possible for contracts that must be concluded in front of the notary public.

6. Does registration of an aircraft in the national registry constitute proof of ownership under the laws of Montenegro?

Civil procedure law foresees the possibility of submission of lawsuits, submissions, and process documentation electronically.

However, this possibility is still not applicable in practice, and the public bodies (courts, administrative bodies etc.) mostly allow submission only via Post or by direct delivery as part of the familiar and practiced procedure.

7. How is an aircraft title transfer effected in Montenegro? What are the formalities required to register such title transfer in the national registry of Montenegro (e.g., notarization, legalization etc.)? Please summarize the related costs and procedures.

Courts in Montenegro are legally obliged to accept procedural documents signed with an electronic signature. However, the application of documents signed with an electronic signature in Montenegro is not commonly used in practice.

The Montenegrin E-Signature Law does not distinguish between official digital signatures and private digital signatures.

8. What information and details are reflected in the certificate of registration of an aircraft?

No, there is no legal obligation to expressly state in the contract that the contract will be signed with an electronic signature.

9. Are the entries in the aircraft registry of Montenegro made available to the public upon submission of a specific application to the competent authority? Are there any fees payable for this?

In general, there is no direct ban on foreign entities that are not located in Montenegro to conclude lease agreements or sign any financial documents with digital signatures. Of course, in each specific case, care must be taken as to whether it is a contract or a document that is required to be drawn up in a certain form, such as the form of a notary record, or whether it is a document that must be signed by hand.

However, please note that electronic registration with the CAA is still not possible. The CAA also does not accept electronically signed documents.

10. What kind of aircraft operations can be conducted with aircraft registered in Montenegro (i.e., private use, commercial air transport or both)?

The aviation industry (neither any other) in Montenegro does not use blockchain technology yet.

11. Does the civil aviation authority in Montenegro authorise the operation of foreign registered aircraft? If so, with which countries has Montenegro entered into bilateral agreements on the basis of article 83-bis of the ICAO Chicago Convention for the delegation of regulatory oversight?

a. Has Montenegrin jurisdiction implemented the e-Apostille program?

In case of a document for which the law of Montenegro is applicable and for which the national legislation requires one of the special forms, the contract/document must be drawn up in the same form, which may exclude the use of an electronic signature.

The Law on Legalization of Public Documents in International Traffic foresees the obligation to legalize public documents issued in another country that are intended for use in front of Montenegrin authorities.

Also, Montenegro has been a signatory to the Hague Convention since 1961, which means that a document supplied with an apostille is exempt from any further certification and is eligible for use without the obligation of legalization when signing/authenticating foreign public documents.

Montenegro has not implemented the e-apostille program. Therefore, the documents intended for Montenegro must be provided with an apostille in paper form.

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