Hotline Complaint Representation

Did you know that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has a hotline that allows anyone to file an anonymous complaint against certificated airmen, air carriers, or otherwise? The FAA’s Hotline Complaint system allows individuals to allege a violation of a Federal Aviation Regulation or conduct that would otherwise jeopardize the safety of the National Airspace System.

The problem with the FAA Hotline Complaint system is two-fold: 1.) anyone can file a complaint against a certificate holder, and 2.) the reporter can remain anonymous. Unfortunately, the FAA Hotline Complaint system opens the door to allowing anyone to make allegations against a certificate holder, thereby generating an FAA inquiry or investigation.

While allowing concerned citizens to report legitimate safety concerns to the FAA is a vital function within this safety-sensitive industry, the attorneys at The Ison Law Firm often represent airmen and certificate holders for Hotline Complaints due to “false” reports made to the FAA by disgruntled individuals. Typically, false FAA Hotline Complaints come from a person on the same airfield as the airman or from a family member or former friend/business partner. In other words, there are individuals there that will file an anonymous report with the FAA because they know it will spell trouble for an airman’s career and/or ability to fly.

Frequently, we represent airmen due to a complaint made to the FAA concerning that airman’s qualification to hold a medical certificate with the FAA. In these instances, someone may claim to the FAA that the airman has an unreported medically disqualifying health condition (i.e., the airman is bi-polar; the airman has substance abuse problems, etc.). The problem with this scenario is that if the airman does not have a disqualifying health condition, the false allegation will require the airman to prove otherwise. However, if the airman does have an unreported medical condition, a Hotline Complaint can create a legitimate issue for the FAA to revoke an airman’s medical or airman certificate(s).

If you receive an FAA Hotline Complaint, the FAA has the authority and responsibility to follow up on any complaints (false or not). How you respond could affect your certificate. If you fail to respond or otherwise provide a response, the FAA could use those statements or lack thereof in an enforcement action against your certificate(s). Thus, your response must aim to avoid and “shut down” an FAA inquiry.

If you have received a Letter of Investigation (LOI) due to an FAA Hotline Complaint, make sure you contact our team today at 855-322-1215 to guide you through the investigative process. At The Ison Law Firm Aviation Lawyers, there is an FAA enforcement defense attorney with experience handling FAA Hotline Complaints, waiting to vector you through legal turbulence.