Certified Flight Instructors—Renewals

Renewal Preparation

As long as the applicant that wishes to renew a CFI is within the 24-month valid period of the certificate, the renewal process can be an administrative action, not requiring a practical test. There are times when an applicant wishes to renewal by way of conducting a practical test, and if this is the case, I would refer you back to the Testing Details for Certified Flight Instructors—Reinstatements page for further guidance and procedures.

For those of you that wish to renew as an admin action, please read the following guidance in order that you provide the necessary documentation so I can renew your certificate.

A person who holds a flight instructor certificate that has not expired may renew that certificate for an additional 24 calendar-months if the holder:

  1. Passes a practical test for renewal of the flight instructor certificate or an additional flight instructor rating; or
  2. Presents at least one of the following:
    1. A record of training students showing that, during the preceding 24 calendar-months, the flight instructor has:
      • Endorsed at least five students for a practical test for a certificate or rating, and
      • Passed at least 80 percent of those students on the first attempt of the test.
    2. A record showing that, within the preceding 24 calendar-months, the flight instructor has served in one of the following positions, and has knowledge of its current pilot training standards and FAA certification standards applicable to the duties and responsibilities of:
      • A company check pilot,
      • A chief flight instructor,
      • A company check airman,
      • A flight instructor in a 14 CFR part 121 or 135 operation, or
      • A person in a position involving the regular evaluation of pilots.
    3. A graduation certificate showing that, within the preceding 3 calendar-months (of issuance), the person has successfully completed an approved flight instructor refresher course (FIRC), consisting of ground training or flight training, or both.
    4. A record showing that, within the preceding 12 calendar-months from the month of application, the flight instructor passed an official U.S. Armed Forces military instructor pilot proficiency check.

Additional Testing Details

Identification—I will need to verify your identity prior to issuing the new CFI Certificate. Normally this is accomplished by having you email me your drivers license or passport in color. Both sides of the DL need to be sent. If the picture doesn’t look like you due to growing a beard, shaving off a beard, completely different hair style, fuzzy picture, etc., I will probably need something more accurate, so be prepared to have a new picture taken if it comes to that.

IACRA—Make sure you have your username and password for IACRA. You will sign in to your application once I have verified your identity in the program.

FTN—Have your FTN available.

Documentation—Refer to the guidance above to determine which method you will use to renew on. If using 2A, I will need good quality photo copies of your records to validate your pass rate and student numbers. If using 2B, I will need a statement from a management person within your company attesting to your position on company letterhead. 2C will require a legible copy of the FIRC certificate. 2D will require proper military records indicating your qualifications as an instructor pilot.

Face to Face Contact—The final step is to actually make contact with you to validate your identity. I normally do this with FaceTime. However, any means available to you is acceptable. I also have a Zoom account that works well.

It is best to start on this in ample time in order to provide the required documentation in a timely manner so your CFI is not in jeopardy of expiring. I highly recommend contacting me as early as possible to discuss exactly what is needed so the process moves forward efficiently and effectively.


I’m sure you will still have questions so please do not hesitate to contact me at any time for clarification! My goal is to ensure you are properly advised as to the required documentation so we can ensure your renewal is processed and issued in a timely manner.