Public Liability Insurance

The primary drone insurance cover provided by  BDF/BMFA for its members when you join is Third Party Liability.  This covers you, the flyer, against any liabilities you may incur during your drone flying activities. Note that, as with any other third party drone insurance, this is NOT an automatic cover for the ‘injured party’. The person insured is the flyer and the policy will indemnify the flyer against any claim if negligence is proven whilst flying.

Cover is in place for both BDF and BMFA members to fly all types of drone and model aircraft for sporting and recreational purposes.

Cover is also provided for personal accident insurance covering permanent disablement.

It covers the normal and lawful pursuits of BDF and its registered members.

Note: Any form of flying for commercial purposes, whether paid or unpaid, is not covered by the basic policy (See ‘Exclusions’).

Indemnity Limits for the Third Party Public and Products Liability

£25,000,000 for any one claim, (in the aggregate in respect of Products Liability).

Territorial Limits
The whole of the UK and elsewhere in the world.

Models Covered

(a)  All classes of drone and model aircraft of whatever size, weight or engine capacity (subject to compliance with the terms of the BMFA’s Article 16 Authorisation or the ‘Open Category’ of CAP 722) except as noted in ‘Exclusions’.

(b)  Model boats and cars.

(c)  Models powered by legal rocket propulsion systems up to and including ‘M’ size motors (operated within the terms of the Air Navigation Order).

(d)  Steam powered models except when used for passenger carrying purposes for hire or reward.

(e)  Kites (operated within the terms of the Air Navigation Order).

(f)  First Person View RC flying provided it is carried out in accordance with the BMFA’s Article 16 Authorisation.

(g)  Model balloons (operated within the terms of the Air Navigation Order). 


(a)  Any form of commercial or trade activities (whether paid or unpaid) including professional, semi-professional or sponsored display teams.

(b)  Pulse jet powered models except as specified in the BMFA General Rules, Section, Reaction Motors, parts (1) and (2) as noted later in this handbook.

(c)  Deliberately staged mid-air collisions at airshows and public displays.


(i)   Money paid to clubs by organisers of fetes, shows, etc, where the club is giving a demonstration does not constitute ‘professional use’.

(ii)  The carrying of Company or Organisation names or logos on models does not constitute a ‘form of commercial or trade activity’.

Extensions(a)  Member-to-member liability is covered including damage to property belonging to fellow members.

(b)  Indemnity is automatically extended to any Principals (Landowners, Schools, Local Authorities, Government Departments etc.) whose land or premises is used by any BMFA affiliated club or registered member.

(c)  The Indemnity is extended to the Committee Members of any affiliated club and all lawful club activities are also indemnified.

(d)  The reduced rate insurance cover available to juniors under the ‘Schools and Youth Groups’ membership scheme only applies when such juniors are flying under the supervision of their group leader(s). To obtain the full unlimited BMFA insurance cover, any such junior must become a full junior member of the BMFA.

(e)  Indemnity is provided for paid flying instruction provided the conditions laid down by the Association are complied with (see ‘Flying Training Cover’ section).

(f)   In the ‘Airside Cover’ special provision, indemnity is provided for members operating their private motor vehicle ‘airside’ on an airfield or aerodrome, in pursuit of any activity associated with model flying where the members own private motor vehicle policy makes a specific exclusion in this respect.  A higher excess is applicable to any claim made under this special provision.


(a)  When dealing with the injured/third party you must not, under any circumstances, admit liability or make or agree any financial settlement with respect to any incident which might give rise to a claim under the policy. However, when dealing with the BMFA and its insurer, you should provide a full and honest account of events, especially when filling in an incident report form.

(b) It is the duty of the insured to exercise reasonable care to see that their models are sound and in proper order and that all reasonable safeguards and precautions against accidents are provided and used

Incident Reporting Procedure

(a)  Prompt notification of all incidents / accidents that may result in a claim on the policy is essential.  This can be done using the BMFA’s online reporting system (see or by contacting the BDF/BMFA’s Leicester Office within 24 hours of the incident. Reports made by telephone out of office hours will be recorded on the office answerphone.

(b)  Ideally, reports should be filed through the online reporting system. Alternatively, the Leicester office will supply you with an incident report form and the office staff will give you any specific advice you need to help you complete this form.

(c) It is important advice that, in the event of any incident that may have insurance implications, you should never admit any liability to any third party involved in the incident.

However, when completing the incident report form, it is essential that you provide a truthful account of events leading to the incident. If you believe that you have any responsibility or liability for the incident then you should declare this on the reporting form. Any declaration you make on the BMFA incident report form will NOT result in you being penalised in any way.

Operative Dates

The liability cover is effective from the date of joining for 12 months.


Individual insurance certificates are accessible to all registered members via their record on the BMFA’s GoMembership system (see  To maintain continuous cover, it is vital that your membership renewal each year is prompt.  Any changes to the personal information detailed on your certificate should be notified to the BMFA.

Product Liability

In any incident it is quite possible for blame to be attributed to a component or equipment failure which could well not be the responsibility of the flyer. The supplier of the component or equipment, who could possibly be a fellow member, could be held ultimately responsible and that could be you. Hence, product liability insurance is essential and it is a key element of the BMFA insurance protection.

Ministry Of Defence Indemnity and Flying On MoD Property

The BMFA insurance provides Crown Indemnity cover to clubs and members flying on land owned by the Ministry of Defence (e.g. RAF airfields).

In order to fly on Ministry of Defence property you will require three things:

  1. Third party insurance, as provided by the BMFA for its members.
  2. Crown indemnity insurance which is a special cover provided by the Association and which is invoked as in 3) below.
  3. A licence issued by Defence Estates (DE) which must be submitted to the BMFA for countersignature to the effect that the applicant is a BMFA affiliated club or member, thus invoking the special BMFA Crown Indemnity insurance cover.

The formal procedure for securing the use of MoD lands usually starts with obtaining permission from the Commanding Officer, after which a licence can be applied for via Defence Estates.

The BMFA's Leicester office is very familiar with the procedure and will provide help and the necessary documents when needed. BMFA Area officials may also be able to help and advise you on this subject.

BMFA Register of Commercial Traders

Following the recent change in regulations for unmanned aircraft, the CAA now categorises flights based on the level of risk rather than the purpose.  As such, flights which previously fell within the scope of the DATA, DEVELOPMENT and DEMONSTRATION (D,D&D)membership extension can generally now be conducted within the scope of the BMFA’s standard Membership Cover - provided they are conducted within the terms of the BMFA’s Article 16 Authorisation or the ‘Open Category’ of CAP 722 and do not fall within the CAA’s definition for commercial flights.

The D,D&D Membership Extension has therefore been replaced by the BMFA Register of Commercial Traders which provides a Membership Extension for current members, covering the limited number of activities which were previously covered by the D,D&D extension but which still remain outside the scope of the standard BMFA Membership Cover, including:

  • Trade stands at Exhibitions, Model Shows or Displays
  • The flying element of flight training schools
  • Small scale manufacturers of model aircraft parts and kits

There is no fee for this, the only requirement being to register. Please contact the BMFA’s Leicester Office for further details.

Personal Accident Insurance

(a) BDF and BMFA Members are covered by a standard personal accident policy whilst participating in Association activities which include the building and flying of model aircraft for sport and recreational purposes as well as travel to and from the flying site.  Reduced benefits apply to those over the age of 85.

(b)  Personal Accident Cover is extended to cover first time visitors to a club who have no previous experience but who are seeking to try out model flying prior to joining the club and BFD or BMFA. Indemnity under this ‘First Time Inexperienced Flyer’ provision will only be in place when flights are being totally organised and supervised by a suitable club member approved by the Club Committee. The limit of this indemnity is 3 separate day visits for any single inexperienced flyer.

(c)  Further details of this cover are available from the Leicester Office or direct from the BMFA's broker.

5.11 Travel Policy

BMFA members can take advantage of an enhanced travel policy for Worldwide travel whilst the primary aim of the travel is to fly drones or model aircraft.  For details of travel rates please contact Tysers direct.

Members are able to buy cover themselves and it is set up as follows: -

  • This would be non-advisory sale, although if required a member could telephone Tysers for advice;
  • Member to download form from website and send a cheque and form to Tysers Insurance Brokers;
  • ‘Receipt’ issued to confirm cover in place;
  • Primary purpose of holiday has to be to fly, although family members can be included as well with costs shown as per person;
  • Declaration will be kept by Tysers and provided to BMFA as required;
  • Any queries on members ‘purpose of trip’ to be referred to BMFA for consideration.

Supplementary Items

Tysers would be pleased to speak with you should you require any additional insurance arrangements beyond those provided as benefits of BMFA Membership.