Another "Does This Require a Commercial Pilot?" Thread

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by JoseCuervo, Jan 27, 2015.

  1. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Let's pretend like I have a field of turnips, and there is a high end-restaurant 150 miles away that makes the world's greatest Turnip Soup with the first turnips of the season.

    But, the turnips need to be in the soup within 2 hours of being picked to be worthy of this recipe, and to justify the long lines of turnip soup connoisseurs. And it is only good with the first turnips of the season. After that, the opportunity is lost.

    Can I contract with them to sell them the 25#s of turnips, and fly them in my personal plane to deliver them for the $3 per pound I charge for turnips? And let the chef know when I am 30 minutes out so he can start boiling the broth.

    Can I charge them a thermos full of soup for my delivery fee?

    Is all this flying just "incidental" to my turnip growing enterprises?
     
  2. Gucci Pilot

    Gucci Pilot Pattern Altitude

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    You are doing something which you can easily do in a car, but you just happen to have an airplane. I say yes. You are making money off the turnips, not the transportation of the turnips(I wouldn't tell the FAA about the thermos of soup). The transportation of the turnips merely supports the business venture of selling the turnips. It is incidental to employment because you are not being paid to fly the turnips, you are being paid to sell the turnips.

    The FAA usually looks at this on a case by case basis. You MIGHT (and I emphasize might) be able to charge a little extra due to using the plane over a slower means of transportation, but I'm not sure.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2015
  3. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    by 'turnips' you mean 'pot', and by 'turnip soup' you mean 'pot brownies', right? I can see right thru this one.......
     
  4. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    [​IMG]





    (On a side note, this society is going to have all sorts of twisted logic and reasoning as pot becomes legalized in more and more states, while still outlawed by the Feds and other states, AND while employers and other entities still consider it to be "bad" and drug test for it. No idea how it all plays out, but I think there will be all sorts of test cases for the grey areas in the next few years. Younger generations will likely never know it to have been illegal, much like prohibition for us.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2015
  5. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Well, this is one of those "1 hour flights or 3 hour drives", so the air transportation would definitely add value as 1 hour turnips are far superior than 3 hour turnips.

    And, a thermos of turnip soup is very valuable payment...
     
  6. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Didn't you ride in the back of the truck at one time?
     
  7. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    but....they have turnip trucks for that. :D
     
  8. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Yes they do, but not sure I would ride in the back of one for 150 miles...

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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  10. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    You need a CP ticket to carry the turnips being sold since you're being compensated (in one way or another) for being PIC of an aircraft carrying cargo (see Mangiamele, among others). However, as long as it's your turnip farm and airplane, and you're only selling the turnips to the end-user at the destination, it's not a 135 operation requiring a commercial operating certificate -- essentially, you're just a corporate pilot, but you're still being compensated so you need a CP ticket.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2015
  11. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    He's still receiving compensation (in the form of free flying time if nothing else), and in that case, you can't be carrying passengers or cargo without a CP ticket. See the Mangiamele letter.
     
  12. mtuomi

    mtuomi En-Route

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    I like turnips. Where is this place?
     
  13. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Does the whole "free flying time" consider that the person benefitting has about a bazillion other things, far more valuable to do other than deliver a box of turnips? And, since it is my plane, my fuel, my checkbook, my time, where does the "free" start coming into play?

    I can see the "free" for someone trying to build hours, but how is "flying" a benefit to someone who should be out harvesting turnips...
     
  14. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Does it change if you fly through Class Bravo?
     
  15. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    It changes everything
     
  16. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

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    If the turnips are indeed the kind that people smoke and he is caught, I think that whether or not he is required to be a commercial pilot would be the least of his worries.
     
  17. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

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    Depends on whether or not the controllers like turnips, or whatever it is.
     
  18. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Class B is like the 'drug free school zone' of the sky.
     
  19. tiger

    tiger Pre-takeoff checklist

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    In other words, it comes down to whether you're taking an ATC preferred root.
     
  20. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    Congratulations.

    You just won the internet. :yes:
     
  21. PPC1052

    PPC1052 En-Route

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    If that's true, then logically there is no business use that would be "incidental." As long as he pays for the cost of use of the plane, and he is transporting his own turnips and not theirs, I would argue this is ok. It's no different than if I fly myself to a deposition, and charge for my hourly rate while in the deposition. I realize that logic doesn't always control how these issues are resolved, and the FAA can take a contrary position, which is why I only state my answer as, "I would argue."
     
  22. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    I just read Mangiamele and I can't see how it applies.

    I am not seeking reimbursement.

    The flight is incidental to the planting, irrigating, harvesting of turnips.

    There is no compensation (other than the thermos of world's most delicious turnip soup).
     
  23. Kiddo's Driver

    Kiddo's Driver Cleared for Takeoff

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    But what if you get a "Monkey pulls the turnip" in return for flying your product?
     
  24. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    The fact that your business is paying for the flight is the issue. Even if you pay for the flight out of pocket, your business is still benefitting, and that means you're benefitting. It just ain't legal without a CP/ATP.

    The FAA has said they don't care about whether or not you are building hours for higher certificates/ratings. If nothing else, you could be gaining landings/approaches towards 61.57 currency, and thus getting something of value. Bottom line is if it's business, you either have a CP/ATP or you don't carry cargo.
     
  25. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    You could argue that, but if he sells them at the other end, you'd lose that argument.

    Actually, it's quite different, because he's carrying cargo to be sold, but you're not carrying anyone or anything other than yourself. See Mangiamele on that point.
     
  26. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Perhaps you can't see it, but I'm quite sure the FAA Chief Counsel could and would. Y'all want to press-to-test on this, be my guess, but if you get caught and cooked, don't say I didn't warn you.

    And no, that flight is not "incidental to the planting, irrigating, harvesting of turnips". It's part and parcel of the business of delivering turnips to paying customers, which is quite another thing.
     
  27. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner En-Route

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    Hauling turnips doesn't fall under the "incidental" exception because the aircraft is carrying property.

     
  28. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Is it different if I fly the other direction next month and buy some turnip seed to plant?

    I am not selling anything, and certainly not carrying any cargo that would be sold.
     
  29. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    I think I see where you are going with this.


    If I fly to the Turnip Grower's Association Meeting, I can fly myself, correct?

    If, on the way to the Turnip Grower's Association Meeting, I drop some turnips off at the world's best turnip soup establishment, now are we "incidental" to my trip to the Turnip Grower's Association Meeting?
     
  30. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Can I fly across the state to get a part for my Turnip Harvester that is broke down in the field? Would that be "incidental"?
     
  31. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner En-Route

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    Flying yourself to the TGA meeting is incidental to turnip farming. Carrying turnips, while possibly incidental, is carrying "property", and therefore does not meet the exception.
     
  32. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Yes.

    No. You're now carrying cargo for compensation/hire.

    I think part of the problem is that you don't understand what the FAA means by "incidental" to the job. Transporting products (turnips) or supplies needed to make the products (seeds) is not "incidental" to the business, it is a "foreseeable and normal part of the business". OTOH, using a plane to get to that meeting would be "incidental" to your business. For more on that fundamental concept, see if you can find a copy of the FAA letter to David Ahlstrand, Sept. 6, 1990. It's not on the Chief Counsel web site, but you should be able to get a copy on request to AGC-200.
     
  33. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    No. You'd be carrying cargo, and that's verboten per Mangiamele.

    The FAA really, really, really doesn't want Private Pilots flying where any money or anything else which could be viewed as compensation or business is involved. They've carved out a few exceptions where nobody else can get hurt and nobody else's property is aboard, but that's about it, and they are most unlikely to ease their position on this.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2015
  34. N801BH

    N801BH Touchdown! Greaser! Gone West

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    MMMMMM.. me too.... Turnip and Collard Greens with some fat back and let to simmer in a cast iron pot over night is almost better then sex.....

    Just add corn bread and little bit of vinegar and the pot liquor is the nector of the gods...:yes:...:):):)
     
  35. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    I appreciate the information.

    It kind of closes out any room for the "few exceptions", as once you add "property", you close the door. My phone is paid for by my sole proprietorship Turnip farm, if I carry the iTurnip 6s Phone on the flight, I am "carrying property" that is just as valuable to the farm as the broken part from across the state.

    It would make it tough to attend the Turnip Growers Association meeting if I can't haul "property" with me.

    Lots of flights would be prohibited, ranchers couldn't go look for lost cattle, etc...
     
  36. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    Serious question...

    Why not just bite the bullet and go for the Commercial license?
     
  37. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    Found the Ahlstrand letter, doesn't seem to be at all similar or pertinent.


    That letter is for an employee flying as a job duty.
     
  38. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    Exactly.

    No, that is not the same. But if that thought encourages you to upgrade to CP, so be it.

    That's not the FAA's problem.

    How do you figure that?
     
  39. JoseCuervo

    JoseCuervo En-Route

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    We only harvest fresh turnips for turnip soup in a 2 hour window, once a year.


    (might be a good idea, but then I am guessing there is some unseen "next shoe".)
     
  40. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    just so ya know.....most FAA FSDO guys have never fallen off of a turnip truck. :no: