If the FAA is requesting additional medical information after you are issued an airman medical certificate or after your application is deferred by an AME, beware! In that, if your medical application is deferred to the FAA or if you indicated “yes” for the first time on one of the many indicators on form 8500, the FAA will likely be sending you a letter that indicates: “a review of your application and report of FAA medical examination reveals the need for additional information regarding your indicated history of [alleged illness].” The letter will go on to allow you 60-days from the date of the letter, in order to provide a litany of requested documentation (including medical records, updated physician reports, personal statements, and in the event of substance-related offenses, there will be a request for arrest records, court records, and a driving record). In the event you do not provide the requested documents, the FAA has the authority to deny your application for “failure to provide.”

It’s important to know that when the FAA is requesting additional medical information, that any information which is provided can and will be used against you. Usually these letters include a copy of the Pilot’s Bill of Rights (akin to your Miranda rights), which outlines the protections you have as an airman in providing a response to the FAA. Nevertheless, the key is that before you provide anything to the FAA, you should make every attempt to confirm that the documents and statements you are providing presents a “winning” case to the FAA. What does this mean? This means that before you provide documents to the FAA that you know will or could result in a denial, you should review your documents with an aviation attorney and appropriate medical professionals to develop (as appropriate) a docket that proves to the FAA that you are qualified for a medical certificate. Remember, the FAA has no motivation to issue you a medical certificate if you are a “borderline” case or worse. Thus, a thoroughly presented docket of materials is key to making your case with the FAA.

If the FAA is requesting additional medical information, you are being presented with an opportunity to prove your case to the FAA medical certification office. Ultimately, it is critical that an airman presented with such an opportunity consult with a FAA medical attorney and qualified medical staff who can review your records and determine your application’s strengths and weaknesses. If the FAA is requesting additional medical information from you, call The Pilot Lawyer at The Ison Law Firm who can provide this analysis and other guidance for the application process.

*The Ison Law Firm does not provide medical advice.