Does the CFI checkride count as a BFR?
This question comes from Clayton:
I am a commercial pilot, single and multi engine ratings with instrument privilages. I am also a CFI single engine land.I recently received my CFI ticket and I’m confused on if the CFI ride counts as a biannual. Regs say that any additional rating qualifies as biannual but since the CFI is a different certificate will I still have to have a biannual?
To start let’s review the regulation that discusses flight reviews, 14 CFR 61.56. If you look at paragraph (d) it states that a “pilot who has passed a pilot proficiency check does not need to accomplish the flight review required by this section.” So does a CFI checkride count as a pilot proficiency check?
The answer is No. Why? Well, because the FAA specifically says so. Not in the regulation of course (that would be too easy) but in this recently released request for interpretation on 14 CFR 61.56(D) They specifically state that:
The answer is that a successful completion of a flight instructor practical test within the preceding 24 calendar months does not automatically relieve a pilot of the requirement to complete §61.56 flight review. A flight instructor practical test is not a pilot proficiency check for a pilot certificate, rating or an operating privilege, or any other acceptable substitute for a flight review specifically listed in § 61.56(d). A flight instructor practical test is not primarily focused on piloting skills but rather on one’s instructional skills. Thus, prima facie, it does not constitute a pilot proficiency check adequate to substitute for a flight review, as specified under § 61.56(d).
One way around this however (and the FAA ruling says so) is to request from your DE that your BFR and CFI checkride be done in conjunction. Acoording to the regs, a flight review requires one hour of ground and flight training. I don’t know about you, but my CFI checkride lasted A LOT longer than one hour on both the ground and flight portion of the practical test. Just be sure that your DE puts in an additional endorsement in your lookbook that attests to the fact that you have met the requirements of 61.56.
Congratulations on your CFI. Hopefully this helps you some.
Here is the link again to this FAA interpretation.