Under 14 CFR 61.15, all pilots must send a Notification Letter to the FAA within 60 calendar days of the effective date of an alcohol and/or drug related conviction or administrative action. In 14 CFR 61.15(c), alcohol and/or drug related convictions or administrative actions refer to motor vehicle actions (MVA).
Examples of Reportable Administrative Actions (Not a comprehensive list)
-Revocation, suspension, or cancellation of driver license for: Chemical test failure/Chemical test refusal
-Administrative per se orders
-10-day civil revocations
-Express consent revocation/suspension
A second Notification Letter needs to be sent if the alcohol and/or drug related offense results in a conviction. Even though the airman sent two notification letters, FAA views the suspension and conviction as one alcohol and/or drug related incident.
The FAA is serious about enforcing reporting requirements. FAA 61.15 goes on to say that if you have 2 motor vehicle actions within a 3-year period, the FAA can revoke or suspend your pilot’s license. That’s significant in that, if you’ve got one DUI, you need to avoid getting another one within 3 years.
On the medical side, once you report the arrest and/or conviction on the MedXpress application, the Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) will determine if they can re-issue your medical, or if it needs to be deferred to the Aviation Medical Certification Division for review.
Even with a single alcohol and/or drug related event, the FAA may open an investigation, propose certificate action, or request additional information regarding your medical qualifications. All very good reasons to contact an aviation attorney for a consultation.
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