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3 Answers

Medical Duration

Asked by: 2860 views FAA Regulations, Student Pilot

How long will my medical certificate last when I become a flight instructor?  With my commercial certificate, I know according to 61.23 that I have 12 cal months before it reverts to a 2nd class which is still okay to exercise privileges of a commercial pilot.  But the flight instructor  paragraph says 60 cal months for someone under age 40, but I still am conducting an operation requiring a commercial certificate when I become an instructor so I am confused about the duration of the certificate.

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3 Answers

  1. Kris Kortokrax on Jun 09, 2013

    If you are under the age of 40, your medical is good for one year for first and second class privileges. It doesn’t revert to a second class after one year. After one year, it reverts to a third class certificate which is good for an additional 48 calendar months. Third class is all that is required to act as a flight instructor if you are required to act as PIC.

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  2. Mark Kolber on Jun 10, 2013

    Shane, I think you’re missing a piece in the analysis. Kris touched on it, but to expand:

    You are not required to have a current medical certificate at all when acting as a flight instructor, unless you will be acting as PIC or as a required crewmember (that means “acting as,” not just logging) . When acting as PIC or required crew, a CFI oly needs a third class certificate.

    That’s based on long-standing FAA policy that a CFI is receiving compensation for teaching, not for piloting and it’s embodied in the wording of FAR 61.23(a)(3) and (b)(5).

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  3. tommytom on Oct 31, 2013

    I may disagree. I have a problem with using the term “reverting”. Question. Does the medical revert or downgrade in class at all? For example. A commercial pilot with a CFI rating under the age of 40 gets a first class medical. After the end of the 12th calendar month his/her medical “remains” a first class but can only perform the duties of a private, instrument, flight instructor etc. for an additional 48 months. Or in other words a first class medical remains a first class medical for 60 months if you are only acting as a private pilot, etc.. It seems to me to be more like a restriction on how a person can “conduct an operation” over time and not a change in class. A first class medical is good and remains to be a first class for 60 months (under 40) however forget “conducting an operation” requiring an commercial pilot certificate after 12 months (except for flight instructors). A person would need to go back and get another first or second class medical to “conduct an operation” “requiring” a commercial pilot certificate.

    Mark and Kris. You have way more experience and education than myself. I walked away from aviation in 2001 under the old regs that used to down grade and revert. I returned last year to a lot of changes and I still am not sure that I understand the medical duration far 61.23. But the way that I’m reading it I don’t see downgrading or reverting.

    Please explain if I am incorrect.

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