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Variation, suspension and cancellation
In exercising its powers and performing its functions, the Civil Aviation Act makes it clear that CASA must regard the safety of air navigation as the most important consideration. The purpose of variation, suspension or cancellation action is to remove a threat to aviation safety.
Where CASA has reasonable grounds to believe there has been a serious breach of the Civil Aviation Act or the Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR 1988 or CASR 1998) by the holder of a licence, certificate or authority, CASA may take appropriate administrative action.
For regular public transport, charter and aerial work aviation operators this may involve varying, suspending or cancelling their Air Operator's Certificate. For aviation maintenance organisations this may involve varying, suspending or cancelling their Certificate of Approval.
Before taking action to vary, suspend or cancel a certificate, CASA provides the holder with written details of the facts and circumstances that CASA believes warrant the proposed action and, except in a case involving an immediate safety threat, provides them with a reasonable opportunity to show cause why the action should not be taken.
Automatic stay of certain reviewable decisions
Section 31A of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 provides that certain of CASA's decisions to vary, suspend or cancel a licence, certificate or authority are automatically stayed for a period of time. In these situations, the activity authorised by the civil aviation authorisation can be continued for the duration of the stay period as if the authorisation had not been varied, suspended or cancelled by CASA.
CASA's decisions to vary, suspend or cancel a licence, certificate or authority are reviewable by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. CASA provides holders with reasons for its decisions and full details of their review rights. Enforcement Manual, Chapter 6 Administrative Action.