Third-Class Medical Certificate Information

Third-Class Medical Certificate Information

One of the requirements, if chosen for our scholarship, is the ability to obtain a Third-class medical certificate.

What is a Third-class medical certificate exactly?

Medical certificates are designated as First-class, Second-class, or Third-class. Generally, First-class is designed for the airline transport pilot; Second-class for the commercial pilot; and Third-class for the student, recreational and private pilot.

A Third-class medical certificate is appropriate for student pilots, recreational pilots, and private pilots who fly for pleasure or personal business (but not for hire). A Third-class medical is valid for 60 months for pilots under age 40, and 24 months for applicants who are age 40 or older.

When do I need a medical certificate?

You need a medical certificate before flying solo in an airplane, helicopter, gyroplane, or airship. We suggest you get your medical certificate before beginning flight training. This will alert you to any condition that would prevent you from becoming a pilot before you pay for lessons.  If you are going to pilot a balloon or glider, you don’t need a medical certificate. All you need to do is write a statement certifying that you have no medical defect that would make you unable to pilot a balloon or glider.

When required, what class of medical certificate must a student pilot have?

Third-class, although any class will suffice. Medical certificates are designated as first-class, second-class, or third-class. Generally, first-class is designed for the airline transport pilot; second-class for the commercial pilot; and third-class for the student, recreational and private pilot.

How do I get a FAA Third-class medical certificate?

To obtain a medical certificate you must be examined by an FAA-designated Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). As the airman you should follow these steps to apply for and obtain your medical certificate:

At your scheduled appointment, the AME will complete your medical examination and the remainder of the FAA application form. If you meet the required medical standards, the AME will issue you a medical certificate.

Where do I get my medical certificate?

From any FAA-authorized aviation medical examiner. There are approximately 6,000 of them in the U.S.

Where can I get a list of FAA-authorized aviation medical examiners?

The FAA publishes a directory that lists them by name and address. You can get a copy from any FAA Flight Standards District Office, air traffic control facility, or flight service station. Airport managers and some aviation businesses (flight schools) may also be able to supply this information. Locate an Aviation Medical Examiner.

If I have a physical disability, can I get a medical certificate?

Yes. Medical certificates can be issued in many cases where physical disabilities are involved. Depending on the nature of the disability, you may have some operating limitations. If you have any questions, contact an FAA-authorized aviation medical examiner before beginning flight training.

Must I carry my medical certificate when I am flying solo?