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FAA RPIC/Part 107 . . . they don't "Expire"

BigAl07

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This topic is possibly the one I get the most comments and Private Messages about so I thought I'd do a Write-Up so others can read and hopefully get a better (more accurate) understanding of this topic that causes so much confusion.

FAA RPIC/Part 107 . . . they don't "Expire"
Your RPIC/Part 107 (and Pilots License for that matter) don't expire. You merely go out of "Currency". This applies to Part 107 as well as other "FAA Credentials" but for the most part I'm focused on Part 107 and PPL.

"Currency" merely means you have met the criteria set forth by the agency to be able to exercise the privileges of the credential. Many things can lead to loss of currency such as:
  • Medical Condition
  • Required Test/Training
  • Age
  • Calendar Months

Your RPIC/Part 107 is good (if all over things remain constant) until the END of the MONTH 24 months after you become Current. It's the END of the MONTH that so many people don't understand so let's dig into that one.

In regards to RPIC/Part 107 (not Part 61) you become Current by taking/passing the initial test at a testing facility. The day you pass the test is when you become "Current". Let's assume you take and pass your initial test TODAY, March 1st, 2021. So you are good to exercise Part 107 privileges until the END of the Month 24 months after March 1st, 2021. This means you are good to fly (assuming all other things remain constant) until Mart 31st, 2023. On April 1sr, 2023 you fall our of Currency and are not allowed to utilize your Part 107 until you again "become Current".

If you took and passed your initial test or did whatever was required to become Current on Feb 14th, 2019, you were good to fly up until Feb 28th, 2021 (yesterday). As of MIDNIGHT last night your Currency lapsed and you'll have to do whatever is currently required to Become Current before you can fly under Part 107 again. Your Part 107 didn't expire, you're just no longer CURRENT.

* It's important to note that even though your RPIC doesn't expire, it can be REVOKED by the FAA.

Hopefully this will help shed some light on this "Grey Area" which seems to confuse so many.
 
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Agree but this is mostly semantics. You still have to re-test and pass for your part 107 to become "valid" once again. If you're flying with an "invalid" part 107, the FAA can and will fine you.
 

BigAl07

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Agree but this is mostly semantics. You still have to re-test and pass for your part 107 to become "valid" once again. If you're flying with an "invalid" part 107, the FAA can and will fine you.

If you fall out of currency you are not required to re-take the Initial Part 107 test over (but you can if you so wish). Once the NEW process is rolled out (hopefully later this month) you merely take the Online Part 107 Recurrency Training to re-establish Part 107 currency. Instead of an in-person test it will be training modules and online quiz to demonstrate you understand the subject matter.

You "could" go for years between your lapse in currency and re-establishing currency and it would still only require the new Online Part 107 Recurrency Training from Safer Skies Through Education - FAA - FAASTeam - FAASafety.gov

Of course the FAA could fine an operator flying on expired credentials but for a simple infraction it would most likely be an "Educational Moment". The FAA tries to always lead with Education as opposed to levying Civil Fines unless the infraction/incident is significant enough to warrant Civil Fines (re: 2 bone heads flying at the Super Bowl in January need to be fined heavily).
 

Ty Pilot

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I must say, with all the complaining about how the FAA has made drone flying confusing and difficult for both recreational and commercial pilots alike (as well as costly for commercial pilots), they're really showing; through these new efforts, that they're getting a lot of the wrinkles in the system ironed out quite well. This new recurrency process as well as the forthcoming recreational knowledge test (Trust), are just two examples that prove the FAA is really trying to help the drone community integrate into the NAS as smoothly as possible.
 

BigAl07

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I must say, with all the complaining about how the FAA has made drone flying confusing and difficult for both recreational and commercial pilots alike (as well as costly for commercial pilots), they're really showing; through these new efforts, that they're getting a lot of the wrinkles in the system ironed out quite well. This new recurrency process as well as the forthcoming recreational knowledge test (Trust), are just two examples that prove the FAA is really trying to help the drone community integrate into the NAS as smoothly as possible.


It's DAUNTING task to say the least but there is a LOT of "behind the scenes" work going on to try and make these transitions as smooth and fair as possible.

Good post Ty :)
 
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BigAl07

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Your work with them is much appreciated, I can't wait to take the online test, are you going to be one of the Trust Administrators as well?


It's a pleasure to work in this arena.

I didn't sign up for TRUST because I'm out of hours as it is LOL! I seem to be burning the candle at both ends most days as it is. Between work, FAA, and Teaching I don't have a lot of excess time.

Thank you for the kind words :)
 
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I must say, with all the complaining about how the FAA has made drone flying confusing and difficult for both recreational and commercial pilots alike (as well as costly for commercial pilots), they're really showing; through these new efforts, that they're getting a lot of the wrinkles in the system ironed out quite well. This new recurrency process as well as the forthcoming recreational knowledge test (Trust), are just two examples that prove the FAA is really trying to help the drone community integrate into the NAS as smoothly as possible.
I totally agree the FAA seems to be changing its way with regard to Part 107 testing. At least the recurrent exam for example. I just passed my third 14 CFR Part 107 exam. The exam took me less than 15 minutes to answer 45 questions. I missed 3 and had to keep taking until I got 100% of them right. One of the questions I didn't even see(so that means I didn't answer 2 correctly.) Once I retook exam 5 minutes later I scored %100. You really have to be asleep at the wheel to not pass this exam, and have few excuses not to.

The FAA on their FAA.gov/safety site(check the URL) gives an online recurrence course which you could study in under 2 hours. After completion of course, you can then take the exam ONLINE, for FREE!!! No longer do you have to go spend $150+ at a testing site.

The icing on the ice is exam doesn't ask about Supplement charts, METARs, TAFs and other stuff you proved knowledge of on your initial Part 107 exams.

I missed two questions on Remote ID. It was covered in online course. I should have paid more attention. My lame excuse is it ain't happening until manufacturers make new drones with it, or some smart woman(or man) makes devices to retrofit my H PLUS.
 

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