Summary: H.R.2238 — 100th Congress (1987-1988)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Reported to House amended, Part I (05/24/1988)

(Reported to House from the Committee on Public Works and Transportation, amended, H. Rept. 100-646 (Part I))

General Aviation Standards Act of 1988 - Amends the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 (relating to aviation accident investigations) to apply such Act, with specified exceptions, to any action for damages for harm arising out of a general aviation accident brought against a general aviation manufacturer, owner, or operator of a general aviation aircraft, or a person who supports or maintains such aircraft or any other person or governmental entity. Establishes guidelines for uniform standards of liability of general aviation manufacturers for general aviation accidents.

States that all actions for harm arising out of a general aviation accident shall be governed by the principles of comparative responsibility.

Establishes, with specified exceptions, a limitation of actions period of 12 years from delivery of aircraft or harm-causing part to the purchaser for general aviation civil liability brought against a general aviation manufacturer. Declares admissible as evidence certain income tax and payroll tax liability for purposes of establishing financial harm arising out of a general aviation accident. Permits the award of punitive damages if a claimant establishes by clear and convincing evidence that the harm suffered was the direct result of conduct manifesting conscious, flagrant indifference to safety. Establishes a two-year limitation of actions period for actions arising out of a general aviation accident.

Confers original jurisdiction upon the Federal district courts, concurrently with State courts, for all civil actions for harm arising out of a general aviation accident. Provides procedures for removal from State to Federal district courts of such actions.

Declares that this Act supersedes any State law regarding recovery of damages for harm arising out of a general aviation accident. Declares the intent of the Congress that sanctions be strictly enforced for violations of Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, including orders to pay to the other party the reasonable costs of legal fees.

Requires the Secretary of Transportation to report to the Congress, within one year after the date of enactment of this Act, the results of a study determining whether persons awarded damages for general aviation accidents under this Act are unable to collect such damages and the amount of any uncollectible damages.