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6 Answers

do you need a medical to be an instructor?

Asked by: 1569 views ,
FAA Regulations, Flight Instructor

My question deals with Medicals.  I am studying for my initial CFI and a questions was asked from a study guide, (do you need a medical to be an instructor).  Let me explain my answer and please let me know if I am on the right track.  My answer initially was NO.  61.23(d) the table says that you need to have a class two for a commercial and a class three for private, and instructor.  However in 61.23(b) operations NOT requiring a medical, (b(5)) when exercising the privleges of a flight instructor certificat if the person is not acting as pilot in command.  But if you are instructing a student pilot, you are the PIC but if you were instructing for a commercial pilot, you would not be considered the PIC unless the student does something that would compromise safety.  At that point if you didnt have your medical, whould you be authorised to take control of the aircraft?  So then I changed my answer to yes/no depending on what certification you are instructing for.

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6 Answers

  1. Jarett L on Dec 10, 2013

    To answer you question yes you need a medical here’s why. 61.23 states you are required to have a medical if acting as a flight instructor and acting as PIC or required crew which as a flight instructor you are required crew. Same as giving training for commercial and instrument you are required crew there for you need at least a 3rd class medical

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  2. Matthew Waugh on Dec 10, 2013

    There are a number of roles you can play as an instructor that do not require a medical. So your initial answer is correct. As long as there is a legal PIC on the aircraft the instructor does not need to act as PIC and does not need a medical in the basic form (there may be other factors that require a medical).
    There are plenty of circumstances where an instructor does need a medical – but not all circumstances.

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  3. Wes Beard on Dec 10, 2013

    Matt is correct!.

    The flight instructor is never required to have a medical. Period.

    If that flight instructor also has to fill the role of a required crew member during any portion of the flight (i.e. pilot-in-command responsibilities, safety pilot) then that instructor must be able to accept those roles per the FARs.

    In those cases of being the pilot-in-command or acting as a safety pilot a medical is required.

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  4. Mark Kolber on Dec 10, 2013

    Just to clarify, Jarett, there is nothing about a instructional flight that automatically requires a CFI to act as PIC or as a required flight crewmember. There are obviously specifics situations where that is the case – primary training with a student pilot, hood work, instrument training with a pilot not already instrument rated. But consider a commercial trainee in an aircraft the pilot is already rated for or specialized training like mountain flying, where the pilot is entirely capable of acting as PIC and the CFI is there purely to provide instruction and has no required pilot role.

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  5. Kris Kortokrax on Dec 10, 2013

    Also, consider that one could indeed do primary training for a student pilot with no medical if the training is done in a Light Sport airplane. Valid driver’s license is all that one would need.

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  6. Dan Newberry on Dec 11, 2013

    Thank you for all the input. At least I know that I was heading down the right direction.

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