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Can an FAA BFR be done in Europe with an EASA FI?

As NCYankee wrote, the logbook record of a BFR is stated by the FARs to be an endorsement.

(2) A logbook endorsed from an authorized instructor who gave the review certifying that the person has satisfactorily completed the review.

The FAA flight “review” is more of a training exercise than a proficiency test, and on this side of the Atlantic the BFR requirement would be construed and applied in accordance with the European aquis – all 200,000-odd pages of it.

Is any European court likely to decide that the periodic review of a pilot flying in European airspace may be conducted by an FAA instructor who has never flown or stepped out of Texas, but not by an EASA instructor? I don’t know, but it is precisely because the ECJ does not consider itself bound by the letter of the law to make such idiotic judgments that it upsets some of my compatriots.

Last Edited by Jacko at 04 Sep 07:57
Glenswinton, SW Scotland, United Kingdom

The problem is not likely getting busted i.e. a criminal offence; this stuff is too complex for almost anyone in the enforcement business to understand. I think anything capable of generating a multi page thread here on EuroGA is never likely to be prosecuted.

The problem is with insurance, where the loss assessor will have unlimited time to play with you, and if they refuse to pay, it is down to you to sue them, and they have great lawyers at their disposal

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Insurance is a fair concern, but do you think a European assessor would try to weasel out of a claim on such a debatable interpretation of a US regulation?

My guess is that’s not going to happen unless he smells something fishy about the claim.

And as we see time and again in Court, organisations with deep pockets don’t always hire effective lawyers. In this case they’d have to show, on balance of probability, that any alleged deficiency in the BFR had a material effect on the incident or accident.

Seriously, if doing a BFR with Lewis Kennington wasn’t such fun, I probably wouldn’t bother.

Glenswinton, SW Scotland, United Kingdom

My view has always been that a BFR needs an FAA FI.

EGTK Oxford

My view has always been that a BFR needs an FAA FI.

Of course.

Insurance is a fair concern, but do you think a European assessor would try to weasel out of a claim on such a debatable interpretation of a US regulation?

I very much agree. It seems like most insurances won’t even bat a lid, since the market is small and they don’t want to ruin their reputation in the market by denying claims on silly grounds.

And yes, even if they were so thorough as to really check the licensing side of the story, they probably wouldn’t look at the FAR side of thingsy Heck, some people even say that to fly an N-reg. in Europe, one doesn’t need an FAA license at all as long as one has an EASA license…

Mainz (EDFZ), Germany

Mark_1 wrote:

You can actually meet the one hour ground portion requirement through the “Wings” programme by completing online courses, webinars etc

It is also possible to meet the flying part by receiving flight instruction from a non-US-certificated flight instructor in most cases. And likewise for skill tests, proficiency checks, and assessments of competence done with non-US examiners. At least that is the Juneau FAASTeam’s position. Time spent being orally examined by non-US examiners is creditable towards the ground portion as well. The full potential of the WINGS programme appears not to be realised in Europe.

The ability to log ground and flight training from two sources also exists for the flight review. An opinion given to Richard L Newman on 28 Jul 2015 by Lorelei Peter, acting Assistant Chief Counsel for Regulations, holds that:

It is permissible for a flight review to be given by two instructors, but each instructor must provide a logbook endorsement certifying that the person has satisfactorily completed the portion of the review that the instructor gave to that person.

The flight review should not enjoy the same flexibility as a pilot proficiency program owing to the wording of section 61.41. Crediting under that section is limited to flight training given outside the US towards a certificate or rating issued under part 61 and the instructor may not exceed the privileges conferred by the state of issue. These conditions lead to three interpretations (of which two might be contrived!):

  1. A non-US-certificated flight instructor cannot give the ground training, or the associated endorsement, required by the flight review.
  2. A non-US-certificated flight instructor cannot give the flight training, or the associated endorsement, required by the flight review if such a privilege is not conferred by the state of issue.
  3. Flight training credited under section 61.41 is limited to meeting the requirements of a pilot certificate or rating issued under part 61. A flight review is not a requirement of a certificate or rating but is instead a necessary activity for the exercising of pilot in command authority. The flight review therefore falls outside the scope of 61.41.

Whereas non-US training and testing may be credited under the pilot proficiency program ( it appears to be a long-standing FAA policy not to extend the same generosity towards the flight review requirements. This inimical policy is evident in an opinion given to John D Collins on 4 Apr 2013 by Mark W Bury as the Acting Assistant Chief Counsel for International Law, Legislation and Regulations Division.

Other flight review substitutes given in 61.56 preclude non-US testing because of unfavourable definitions in part 61. For example the examiner referred to in 61.56(d) does not mean an examiner certificated in accordance with other than US regulations. The definition of examiner in 61.1(b) clearly precludes Part-FCL examiners which is reinforced in the opinion given to Caroline Olson on 16 Nov 2016 from Lorelei Peter as the Assistant Chief Counsel for Regulations:

Given the definitions of “examiner” and “practical test” in §61.1 [footnote 2] for purposes of part 61,
the EASA examiner is not an “examiner” and the EASA multi-engine commercial pilot test
is not a “practical test.” Therefore, the regulations applicable to “examiners” and “practical
tests” do not apply to the flight in question. The FAA views the flight in question as an
operation for compensation or hire.

(That daft interpretation combined with the one given to W W Grannis requires Part-FCL examiners conducting evaluations in the US to hold, and act under the privileges of, a US flight instructor certificate.)

Reference 14 CFR 61.195 is unnecessary because that section does not apply to non-US-certificated instructors: see 61.181.

Last Edited by Qalupalik at 07 Sep 00:53

Over the past week I have been in touch with several FAASTeam Program Managers and each has agreed that non-FAA flight activities may be credited under the WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program. Completion of a “Phase” under WINGS is an acceptable substitute for a flight review.

Creditable flight activities may include flight training received from a non-FAA flight instructor outside the US and evaluations such as skill tests, proficiency checks, and assessments of competence for non-FAA licensing purposes.

Creditable ground activities include ground instruction received from a non-FAA ground or flight instructor and oral examining done with a non-FAA examiner. These are in addition to the wealth of free online knowledge courses made available at Anyone, including non-FAA certificate holders, may create an account and take advantage of the knowledge courses.


@Qalupalik: that would be great if EASA prof-checks and training flights could be credited towards your WINGS program and that way you could earn credits and move the flight review date forward. I have logged in to and tried to figure out how to request credits for such events to be added. They always request a validator for the activity to be entered, which should be selected from a list of known validators. How to add or request the credits, I don’t see how it is possible. Can you share some light on this?

EDLE, Netherlands


Any FAASTeam Program Manager should be able to do the validation and you can communicate with them directly. They’ll want a copy of the instructor or examiner certificate. The directory is here:

The FPM at Juneau was the most responsive although he mentioned there being an ops guy with the small team in Brussels who could do it.


I meant to mention also that the logbook should be appropriately endorsed and a copy submitted to the FPM for validation. A mobile phone snapshot is acceptable. Template endorsements are presented in FAA AC 61-65H (link) – Certification: Pilots and Flight and Ground Instructors. See example A.66 for WINGS.

The three flight activities may be consolidated into one flight and no minimum time is prescribed.

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