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Old 06-16-2019, 05:34 PM   #1  
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Default Surrender medical?

I keep seeing posts about this but was curious what does it mean to surrender your medical? Like I understand obviously it means give it up but what does that mean regarding the FAA if itís a voluntary surrender? Do people mail in their Medicals?
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Old 06-16-2019, 09:01 PM   #2  
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I keep seeing posts about this but was curious what does it mean to surrender your medical? Like I understand obviously it means give it up but what does that mean regarding the FAA if itís a voluntary surrender? Do people mail in their Medicals?
It usually means FAA medical has become aware of a condition that disqualifies you from holding that medical certificate. A letter is sent requesting you to surrender your certificate. If you do not do so, then they'll begin legal action to issue an order requiring you to surrender it, which you can usually fight at your own expense and with your own lawyer, but if a legitimate case, you'll be spending money for no reason and still lose your medical. That said, mistakes have been made before by medical. Also, I don't know if it works the same way in medical, but with airmen certificates, if revoked, you are prohibited from applying again for said certificate for a period of time, like a year. If surrendered, an airman can re-apply for the same certificate again the next day. Some people choose this over an airman certificate 44709 when a 44709 is ordered, because they realize they got real poor instruction and do not think they could pass a practical test. So they go back and retrain and retake the actual practical, rather than risk losing it on the 44709. Got a bit off-topic, but that is some of how surrendering works with airman certificates.
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Old 06-17-2019, 05:17 AM   #3  
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It usually means FAA medical has become aware of a condition that disqualifies you from holding that medical certificate. A letter is sent requesting you to surrender your certificate. If you do not do so, then they'll begin legal action to issue an order requiring you to surrender it, which you can usually fight at your own expense and with your own lawyer, but if a legitimate case, you'll be spending money for no reason and still lose your medical. That said, mistakes have been made before by medical. Also, I don't know if it works the same way in medical, but with airmen certificates, if revoked, you are prohibited from applying again for said certificate for a period of time, like a year. If surrendered, an airman can re-apply for the same certificate again the next day. Some people choose this over an airman certificate 44709 when a 44709 is ordered, because they realize they got real poor instruction and do not think they could pass a practical test. So they go back and retrain and retake the actual practical, rather than risk losing it on the 44709. Got a bit off-topic, but that is some of how surrendering works with airman certificates.
Oh I see. So when people self surrender without the FAA asking they just let it expire?
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:31 AM   #4  
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No thatís two different shades of grey.
Surrender - you voluntarily give it up to (maybe) never get it back again.
Expire - exactly what it says.

Letís say you get land gear up or otherwise end up with a bent airplane in a ditch.
You learn of all the drama to expect and go: Ďyou know what? Iím just gonna quit and walk awayí

You visit the FAA and physically hand over your certificate and medical and tell them youíre voluntarily surrendering in lieu of investigations and possible revocation and or retesting (44709)

Vs


Hey Iím out of money and my medical is coming up for renewal.
Canít spare $100 so Iíll let it expire and Iíll renew it some other time.
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Old 06-17-2019, 09:47 AM   #5  
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The FAA conducts random in-person inspections of aircraft and pilots. These inspections are commonly referred to as "ramp-checks." During the ramp check, the inspector will ask for aircraft documentation, as well as pilot documents. These include pilot certificate, and medical.

There is an old, but persistent myth that a pilot must physically hold the pilot certificate and not allow the inspector to hold it, because it could be considered "surrendering" the certificate. This is idiotic, but I still hear pilots perpetuate the falsehood to this day.

Surrender is a formal process of not only giving the medical or pilot certificate back to the FAA, but formally declaring that one is surrendering the certificate. If the FAA wants to take it, they may do so through suspension or revocation, but neither of those are accomplished by simply holding the certificate, and the FAA is not allowed to take either one without administrative action (a suspension or revocation).

If one surrenders the medical, it may be at the FAA's direction, or one may choose to do so. Just as one may surrender one's driving privileges (as opposed to simply laying the driver license on the bureau and never using it again), one may surrender a pilot certificate or medical certificate.

Tired Soul gave the example of one who surrenders certification in an attempt to forestall FAA enforcement action. That may or may not work, but it's about the only reason I could imagine one surrendering either the pilot certificate or medical.

It might be a way of putting closure on one's flying; one might have a medical issue that has eliminated one's chance to fly again (deteriorating eyesight or another condition which makes flying impractical or impossible): one might surrender the certificate as a way of hanging up one's spurs. Otherwise, I see no value in giving up what one has worked so hard to get; I would choose to let it simply expire.
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:04 PM   #6  
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The FAA conducts random in-person inspections of aircraft and pilots. These inspections are commonly referred to as "ramp-checks." During the ramp check, the inspector will ask for aircraft documentation, as well as pilot documents. These include pilot certificate, and medical.

There is an old, but persistent myth that a pilot must physically hold the pilot certificate and not allow the inspector to hold it, because it could be considered "surrendering" the certificate. This is idiotic, but I still hear pilots perpetuate the falsehood to this day.

Surrender is a formal process of not only giving the medical or pilot certificate back to the FAA, but formally declaring that one is surrendering the certificate. If the FAA wants to take it, they may do so through suspension or revocation, but neither of those are accomplished by simply holding the certificate, and the FAA is not allowed to take either one without administrative action (a suspension or revocation).

If one surrenders the medical, it may be at the FAA's direction, or one may choose to do so. Just as one may surrender one's driving privileges (as opposed to simply laying the driver license on the bureau and never using it again), one may surrender a pilot certificate or medical certificate.

Tired Soul gave the example of one who surrenders certification in an attempt to forestall FAA enforcement action. That may or may not work, but it's about the only reason I could imagine one surrendering either the pilot certificate or medical.

It might be a way of putting closure on one's flying; one might have a medical issue that has eliminated one's chance to fly again (deteriorating eyesight or another condition which makes flying impractical or impossible): one might surrender the certificate as a way of hanging up one's spurs. Otherwise, I see no value in giving up what one has worked so hard to get; I would choose to let it simply expire.
Yeah I "surrender" my certs every time I get a line check. So far I always get them back after about three minutes.
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Old 06-17-2019, 09:29 PM   #7  
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There is an old, but persistent myth that a pilot must physically hold the pilot certificate and not allow the inspector to hold it, because it could be considered "surrendering" the certificate. This is idiotic, but I still hear pilots perpetuate the falsehood to this day.

Surrender is a formal process of not only giving the medical or pilot certificate back to the FAA, but formally declaring that one is surrendering the certificate. If the FAA wants to take it, they may do so through suspension or revocation, but neither of those are accomplished by simply holding the certificate, and the FAA is not allowed to take either one without administrative action (a suspension or revocation).
Correct, except the process of a suspension or revocation is legal action, not administrative, within the boundaries of civil law, unless exceptional circumstances push it to criminal (extremely rare). The FAA has no right to "take certificates" without due process. The administrator can, in an emergency order, suspend or revoke a certificate when there is a demonstrable imminent threat to public safety, but even that has several steps of due process and notifications that have to be met and can be overturned by the NTSB judge upon information from the other party, all before finalized.
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Old 06-17-2019, 09:36 PM   #8  
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Yeah I "surrender" my certs every time I get a line check. So far I always get them back after about three minutes.
You dare devil.

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Correct, except the process of a suspension or revocation is legal action, not administrative, within the boundaries of civil law, unless exceptional circumstances push it to criminal (extremely rare). The FAA has no right to "take certificates" without due process. The administrator can, in an emergency order, suspend or revoke a certificate when there is a demonstrable imminent threat to public safety, but even that has several steps of due process and notifications that have to be met and can be overturned by the NTSB judge upon information from the other party, all before finalized.
Yeah, I was thinking of emergency revocation specifically.

Of course, the grounds for doing so are occasionally controversial and sometimes creative, and subject to some legal wrangling. The infamous revocation of Bob Hoover's medical for failure to taxi back to his starting point on the field after landing with both engines shut down is perhaps the zenith of overzealous stupidity.

My own high point was being called into the office of the head of a FSDO and told point blank that if I didn't immediately go buy the secretary at the front desk a dozen red roses, he'd find a reason to take certificate action against me. I kid not. Further proof of those in the Administration who wouldn't have made it in the private sector.
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Old 06-18-2019, 06:29 AM   #9  
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Yeah I "surrender" my certs every time I get a line check. So far I always get them back after about three minutes.
Take no chances. Demand his FAA identification card as a hostage.
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Old 06-22-2019, 12:31 PM   #10  
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I had to surrender my medical 2 years ago. I had gone on meds I couldn't fly with. AMAS Doc said just lay low and don't fly, don't mention the new med until I have to. A month later I got a routine letter from the FAA medical folks wanting an updated list of my prescriptions. I'd been on waivers for many years. I called the AMAS Doc back and he said just send in the medical along with the updated list of drugs. I sent it to OKC via certified mail along with the list explaining I'd just recently started the grounding medication.
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