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gkg434
09-26-2015, 04:04 PM
Hi
I'm hoping someone on here has a similar background to mine and can help by sharing their experience with me...
All I've ever wanted to do was fly, but after my dad died when I was a teenager I made some bad choices and got arrested a few times. I believe my background shows 3 convictions of possession of marijuana, 1 possession of alcohol, and 2 petty thefts. All of them were over 10 years ago except the last petty theft that is about 7 years ago now. (Also 2 were felonies but dropped down to misdemeanors in court). I also had a bad driving record at that time, but have only had 2 or 3 tickets in the last 10 years.

After turning my life around and getting my head on straight I've decided to live a respectable life and contribute as much back to society as I can to make up for those years when all I did was take and cause trouble. Now I have been working successfully in real estate and living an honest life and I want to pursue my dream of flying. I know the majors are most probably out of the question for me, and that's ok... If I can just be a flight instructor I would be happy to turn that into a career even if I only ever earn $45,000 a year at my peak.

So my concern is the faa medical certificate. It looks like it's going to be pretty hard even just to get my 3rd class medical certificate just because I got caught so many times... does anyone have any experience with getting a medical certificate with more than 3 convictions?

Thank you in advance.


JohnBurke
09-26-2015, 04:35 PM
Except for motor vehicle action (drunk driving or driving under the influence, none of the others will impact your medical certificate. In your case, your description suggests that none of your past should impact your application for a medical, given the time since your previous history.

If you choose to make a career of flying, those are things that employers will ask about. Time and distance from the events and lessons learned are the answer.

gkg434
09-26-2015, 05:05 PM
Except for motor vehicle action (drunk driving or driving under the influence, none of the others will impact your medical certificate. In your case, your description suggests that none of your past should impact your application for a medical, given the time since your previous history.

If you choose to make a career of flying, those are things that employers will ask about. Time and distance from the events and lessons learned are the answer.

That is great information, that would be incredible! My main cause of concern is that the faa website says that the medical examiner must defer certification if the applicant has had more than 3 arrests in their lifetime. Since I do, I was worried that would make it difficult to obtain. I wonder if it would be harder to get a 1st class with my history also..

Thanks a lot, that gives me great hope!


criticalaoa
09-27-2015, 11:36 AM
I know a guy with a worse record than you and he is now a captain at a regional. Don't discount the possibilities just follow the answer above. Lessons learned. If you really did turn your life around there is a chance up in the chain for you.

gkg434
09-27-2015, 04:11 PM
I know a guy with a worse record than you and he is now a captain at a regional. Don't discount the possibilities just follow the answer above. Lessons learned. If you really did turn your life around there is a chance up in the chain for you.

That's great to hear, I would do anything to fly for a regional...

I've spoken go a few pilots in person and they all told me to mark "no" on all of the questions on the medical application.. I don't like the idea of being dishonest at all, but they all insist that the doctors and the faa don't check into anything or run Amy background check unless you report something. I want to be honest and hope that they see that I have the potential to be a great pilot, but they have me nervous, along with a lot of information I've read on the faa website and other sources.. either way I choose, once I submit the app there's no going back.

Again, I hate the idea of lying, I stopped doing that when I turned my life around but these pilots obviously know a lot more about this process than I do. I really don't know what to do.

JohnBurke
09-27-2015, 04:39 PM
Anyone who tells you to be dishonest on an application is someone whom you should disregard in future. Don't do that.

The FAA doesn't conduct "background checks" for medical certificates. Your records are checked against driving records. When the FAA looks at your history with regard to driving under the influence, your'e asked if you've ever been convicted. This addresses motor vehicle actions which include suspension or revocation of driving privileges, regardless of whether a conviction has taken place.

If you lie on your application, it may come to light in the future, and that's a separate offense which could be very damaging. Far better to have items reported on your application, as every medical application after that is addressed as "previously reported, no change."

Although all questions are submitted online, a .pdf example of the explanations for what's on the form is here:

http://www.gleim.com/public/pdf/ltf/faa_form8500.pdf

Tippy
09-27-2015, 04:39 PM
DO NOT LIE. its career suicide. yes the chances of getting caught on a medical for things like that is small, but if found out in the future they can and will pull your medical, and possibly deny you in the future...

rickair7777
09-27-2015, 05:49 PM
Except for motor vehicle action (drunk driving or driving under the influence, none of the others will impact your medical certificate. In your case, your description suggests that none of your past should impact your application for a medical, given the time since your previous history.

In this case, most likely correct. Time has passed and most importantly he was young when it happened. But the FAA can and will deny/defer certification for non-driving criminal history based on psychological grounds, and any real crimes (theft, fraud, assault, etc) much after age 17 will probably trigger that. Youthful misbehavior they'll attribute to youth unless they reason to think otherwise.

He may need to pay for a psych eval.

Hard to answer the question without knowing the ages at which the incidents occurred.

JohnBurke
09-28-2015, 06:27 AM
He's provided nothing that indicates a psychological issue, or one that's been diagnosed in the past. Petty theft and possession of alcohol or marajuana as a juvenile ten years ago do not equate to a psychological or medical problem, and have no bearing on the medical certificate.

Whatever he's been doing to get several tickets in the last few years needs to stop; shouldn't be any tickets in the last few years, but those won't impact a medical certificate.

Regardless of whether the crime occurred before or after age 17, the information provided gives no basis for a psychological deferral or requirement for a psychological exam.

rickair7777
09-28-2015, 09:05 AM
He's provided nothing that indicates a psychological issue, or one that's been diagnosed in the past. Petty theft and possession of alcohol or marajuana as a juvenile ten years ago do not equate to a psychological or medical problem, and have no bearing on the medical certificate.

Whatever he's been doing to get several tickets in the last few years needs to stop; shouldn't be any tickets in the last few years, but those won't impact a medical certificate.

Regardless of whether the crime occurred before or after age 17, the information provided gives no basis for a psychological deferral or requirement for a psychological exam.

A pattern of criminal behavior can apparently cause the FAA to investigate your mental health.

But like I said youthful misbehavior would probably just be considered a "phase".

JohnBurke
09-28-2015, 10:26 AM
A pattern of criminal behavior can apparently cause the FAA to investigate your mental health.

But like I said youthful misbehavior would probably just be considered a "phase".

Examples?

While the FAA has pursued some questionable cases in the past (including the infamous Hoover revocation, and that of an airline pilot in Alaska who made public statements that he grieved for his dead son each time he took off and overflew the cemetery), I am not aware of any cases of ten year old minor offenses that have ever lead to a requirement for a psychiatric evaluation.

Do you have any cases in mind?

hogganica
10-01-2015, 10:06 PM
I'm actually dealing with something similar to this myself right now. I had a pretty nasty run in with the law as a 16-year old (now pushing 21) but when I went to get my medical certificate they actually did request psychiatric evaluation.

They said it was regarding the part of the mental health requirements in that it's a disqualifying thing if you have "a personality disorder that is severe enough to have repeatedly manifested itself by overt acts," and right now we're arguing over it. We agree that it was a personality disorder, and that my juvenile record was caused by it -- but it was a singular incident.

So I guess it's not a ten year thing coming back to bite me in the ass, but I most definitely am having a five year old incident coming back on me, and I have psychiatrists who are willing to vouch and the government is still being stingy.

MedMia
10-04-2015, 07:49 AM
I have a question. On my first medical i put what my past had been as far as misdermeanors and felonies. I had a posession charge over 10 years ago. On my last medical in '13 i put no for previous convictions by accedent....wasnt used to the new format. What should i do as far as my upcoming medical is concerned????.

rickair7777
10-04-2015, 10:37 AM
Examples?

While the FAA has pursued some questionable cases in the past (including the infamous Hoover revocation, and that of an airline pilot in Alaska who made public statements that he grieved for his dead son each time he took off and overflew the cemetery), I am not aware of any cases of ten year old minor offenses that have ever lead to a requirement for a psychiatric evaluation.

Do you have any cases in mind?

I know somebody, but his issues were well into adulthood. Like I said, "typical" minor juvenile issues are not likely to trigger mental health concerns.

The FAA has latitude to decide which documented behavior patterns might be cause for concern. Substance abuse is case-in-point...if you get caught they'll assume a mental health issue, ie addiction.

gkg434
10-19-2015, 05:36 PM
I have an update:
I found on the faa website that the ame may issue the certificate if the most recent arrest was over 5 years ago and the ame does not believe there is a substance abuse problem.

So I am hoping that the ame will be able to issue me without deferral based on my last arrest being over 5 years ago. I did experiment with drugs and alcohol when I was younger, but have been away from that lifestyle for 5 years now so I'm hoping the doctor will be able to see that (maybe I'll go to a lab for a drug/alcohol screening and bring it with me to show) and be able to issue my certificate without having to defer me resulting in a long process of seeing psychologists, etc.

Anyone with any experience with this, I would greatly appreciate your feedback/experiences!



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