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Compliance with the rules

We conduct surveillance to monitor the ongoing safety of organisations or individuals who hold an authorisation.

We also have a range of enforcement tools and legislative powers to manage non-compliance with the rules. We use the most appropriate enforcement options available when dealing with a breach. Enforcement options are exercised in accordance with our enforcement manual and our regulatory philosophy.


Surveillance is made up of audits and checks that examine and test systems, sample products besides gathering evidence, data, information and intelligence. Our surveillance findings are classified and aim to encourage a collaborative approach to maintaining and improving safety. Find out more on our surveillance page.

Administrative action

Administrative action is taken when we believe there has been a serious breach of the civil aviation act or the Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR 1988 or CASR 1998). Find out more on our administrative action page or read chapter six of our enforcement manual.

Compliance-related action

Compliance-related action is used by CASA for less serious breaches—it generally doesn’t require the use of our specific legislative powers and decisions are not reviewable by an external body. More details can be found on our compliance-related action page or in chapter four of our enforcement manual.

Enforceable voluntary undertakings

An enforceable voluntary undertaking may be used where there is evidence of a breach, or potential breach, of the aviation law and we believe remedial action, rather than regulatory action, is in the best interests of aviation safety. You can find out more on our enforceable voluntary action page or in chapter five of our enforcement manual.

Serious and imminent risk

We can take immediate action if we believe a civil aviation authorisation holder has engaged in, is engaging in, or is likely to engage in conduct that constitutes, contributes to or results in a serious and imminent risk to air safety. You can find out more on our serious and imminent risk page or in chapter seven of our enforcement manual.


Serious breaches of the civil aviation act or the Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR 1988 or CASR 1998) may be investigated and referred to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions. This generally includes actions that are deliberate or demonstrate a reckless regard for the safety rules; are part of a pattern of infringements by the same individual or organisation; or seriously endangers the safety of others. Further information is available on our prosecution page or in chapter eleven of our enforcement manual.

Infringement notices/demerit points

CASA can choose to issue an infringement notice which will result in incurring demerit points if the recipient is an authorisation holder. You can find out more on our infringement notices and demerit points page or in Chapter ten of our enforcement manual.

Strict liability

Breaches of most of the provisions of the Civil Aviation Regulations and the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations, and a few of the provisions in the Civil Aviation Act are offences of strict liability.

You can find out more about what it means, why we use it and how you can defend yourself in our strict liability information sheet.

Decisions – suspensions and cancellations

Read a summary of action taken by CASA.

Last modified: 23 June 2019