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Section 13 Issue a Gold Seal Flight Instructor Certificate

5-566    PROGRAM TRACKING AND REPORTING SUBSYSTEM (PTRS) ACTIVITY CODE. 1528 (as appropriate, for renewal, reinstatement, added rating, or upon application)

5-567 OBJECTIVE . This task determines if an applicant is eligible for a gold seal flight instructor certificate. Successful completion of this task results in the issuance of a temporary airman certificate for a gold seal flight instructor or the denial of a gold seal flight instructor certificate.

5-568    GENERAL.

A.    Purpose of Gold Seal Flight Instructor Certificate. Flight instructor certificates with distinctive gold seals are issued to instructors who currently meet certain qualifications. These certificates are intended to identify those instructors who have high personal qualifications and good records as active flight instructors. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) hopes to issue as many gold seal certificates as possible to provide an incentive for flight instructors to improve their qualifications.

B.    Renewal and Eligibility. The holder of a gold seal flight instructor certificate who applies for renewal does not need to reestablish eligibility for a gold seal.

C.    Issuance. If the applicant meets the criteria stated in paragraph 5-571E3, the aviation safety inspector (ASI) may add a gold seal to the instructor’s certificate upon renewal or reinstatement, when adding an additional rating, or by initial application.


A.    Prerequisites.

·    Knowledge of the requirements of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 61 and FAA policies, and

·    Qualification as an ASI (Operations) or aviation safety technician (AST).

B.    Coordination. This task requires coordination with the:

·    Airworthiness unit;

·    Airman records section of the Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760;

·    Enforcement Information System; and

·    Accident/Incident Data Subsystem.


A.    References (Current Editions).

·    14 CFR parts 1 , 61 , and 91 ;

·    PTRS Field Office Manual; and

·    Advisory Circular (AC) 61-65 , Certification: Pilots and Flight and Ground Instructors.

B.    Forms.

·    FAA Form 8060-4, Temporary Airman Certificate (Figure 5-61); and

·    FAA Form 8710-1, Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application (Figure 5-60).

C.    Job Aids. Job Task Analysis (JTA): O3.1.54

5-571    PROCEDURES.

A.    Schedule Appointment. An ASI or AST must inform the applicant to bring the following documents to the appointment:

·    Flight instructor certificate,

·    Ground instructor certificate,

·    Commercial pilot certificate with an instrument rating or an airline transport pilot (ATP) certificate, and

·    Reliable record of flight instruction.

B.    Applicant Arrives for Appointment.

1)    Collect the documents listed above.
2)    Open PTRS file.

C.    Review FAA Form 8710-1, Airmen Certificate and/or Rating Application.

1)    In section I, Application Information, ensure that the applicant has checked the box for Flight Instructor and indicated Initial, Renewal, or Amendment, as appropriate. The applicant should also have checked the box labeled “Other” and inserted the words “Gold Seal” in the space next to it.
2)    Check the application for accuracy, using the instructions on the form attachment. The applicant is not to complete section II.
3)    In section III, Record of Pilot Time, the applicant must list at least the aeronautical experience required for the airman certificate and rating sought. Graduates of part 141 pilot schools or part 142 training centers must provide their aeronautical experience in this section on the FAA Form 8710-1 application even though the graduation certificate is evidence of having completed the course of training. If aeronautical experience has no bearing on the airmen certification action being sought, it is not necessary for an applicant to complete section III on FAA Form 8710-1. For example, with flight instructor renewal applications, flight instructor reinstatement applications, ground instructor qualification applications, and pilot type rating applications, aeronautical experience would not have a bearing on the airman certification action and thus the applicant would not be required to complete section III of the application. However, all applicants are encouraged to complete this section because the application remains on file with the FAA and can be used to substantiate past aeronautical experience if a person were to ever lose his or her logbook.

D.    Verify Applicant’s Identity. Inspect acceptable forms of identification to verify the applicant’s identity (see volume 5, chapter 1, section 3). Compare the identification with the personal information provided on FAA Form 8710-1.

1)    If the ASI or AST can verify the applicant’s identity, continue the issuing process.
2)    If the ASI or AST cannot verify the applicant’s identity because of a lack of or inadequate identification, explain what types of identification are acceptable. Advise the applicant to return with appropriate identification to reapply.
3)    If the applicant’s identity appears to be different from the information supplied on FAA Form 8710-1, or it appears that an attempt at falsification has been made, do not issue FAA Form 8060-4 (see volume 7, chapter 6).

E.    Required Criteria. Inspect the applicant’s certificates and record of flight instruction to determine if the applicant meets the following criteria at the time of application:

1)    Holds a flight instructor certificate and, at least, a commercial pilot certificate with an instrument rating or an ATP certificate with instrument privileges. Glider flight instructors need not hold an instrument rating;
2)    Holds a ground instructor certificate with an advanced or instrument ground instructor rating; and
3)    Within the past 24 months has accomplished one of the following:

·    Trained and recommended at least 10 applicants for certificates or ratings, and at least 80 percent of these applicants must have passed the flight test on their first attempt;

·    Conducted at least 20 practical tests as a designated pilot examiner or 20 graduation tests as chief flight instructor for an approved pilot school course;

·    A combination of the above two (two practical tests equal one trained and recommended applicant); or

·    Holds a Master Certificated Flight designation from National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI).

F.    Discrepancies. If a discrepancy that cannot be immediately corrected exists in any of the documents, return the application and all submitted documents to the applicant. Inform the applicant why he/she is ineligible and explain how the applicant may correct the discrepancies.

G.    Applicant Meets Requirements. If an applicant meets all of the requirements for a gold seal flight instructor certificate, the ASI or AST should issue FAA Form 8060-4 with the appropriate flight instructor ratings.

1)    Prepare the certificate in duplicate, as per volume 5, chapter 1, section 5.
2)    Enter the words “Gold Seal” as shown in Figure 5-61.
3)    Number the certificate with the same certificate number that appears on the applicant’s superseded flight instructor certificate.
4)    Complete the ASI/AST certification section. Sign the reverse side of FAA Form 8710-1.
5)    Forward the completed file to AFS-760.

H.    Complete PTRS. Complete PTRS in accordance with the PTRS field office manual.

5-572    TASK OUTCOMES. Completion of this task results in either the:

·    Issuance of a temporary airman certificate for a gold seal flight instructor, or

·    Denial of issuance of gold seal flight instructor certificate.

NOTE: If the ASI or AST denies the applicant a gold seal flight instructor certificate, record the action in PTRS.


A.    Renewal of flight instructor certificate.

B.    Reinstatement of flight instructor certificate.

C.    Added rating to flight instructor certificate.

Figure 5-60, FAA Form 8710-1, Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application—Gold Seal Certificate

Figure 5-61, FAA Form 8060-4, Temporary Airman Certificate—Gold Seal Certificate

Sample completed FAA Form 8060-4, Temporary Airman Certificate, gold seal certificate.

RESERVED.    Paragraphs 5-574 through 5-590.