Does a kit have to be listed on the FAA’s Approved Kits List?
A kit does not have to be on the FAA's Approved Kits List in order for the aircraft to be licensed as an amateur-built. If a kit is not on the list, it only means that the kit manufacturer has not gone through the procedure of having the kit formally inspected by the FAA. There are many kits that could qualify for amateur-built certification that are not on the list. For kits that do not appear on the list, the burden of proof shifts to the builder to document that the kit meets the major portion requirement (commonly called the 51% rule) for licensing as an amateur-built aircraft.
The builder can use one of two different Fabrication and Assembly Checklists to document their aircraft meets the 51% requirements. The following criteria are used to determine which checklist you should use.
• If the kit was purchased from the manufacturer prior to 9/30/09 and if no commercial assistance was used then builders can use the prior Fabrication and Assembly Checklist FAA Form 8000-38, contained in AC 20-27F.
• If the kit was purchased from the manufacturer after 9/30/09, or commercial assistance was used during construction then the current Fabrication and Assembly Checklist 2009, contained in AC 20-27G must be used.