A newly issued flight instructor certificate often has the word "PENDING" in the certificate number field.

In 8900.1 Flight Standards, Volume 5, Section 1, Section 5, Paragraph 5-112(c)(2)(a) Instructions are given that the temporary airman certificate for a flight instructor should be filled in with the corresponding airman certificate number with "CFI" appended.

In the event that does not happen, and the certificate number shows "PENDING", how should the instructor format their signature to make an endorsement prior to the issuance of a permanent replacement?

  • $\begingroup$ I would still use your pilot certificate number and add CFI to the end. It will be the same unless you are also removing your SSN number as your pilot certificate number. The purpose 8s there is an accident or incident with your student the FAA can know who the CFI is. Using your pilot certificate number accomplishes that goal. $\endgroup$
    – wbeard52
    Jun 15, 2019 at 17:42
  • $\begingroup$ I spoke with an inspector at the SLC FSDO. The inspector on the line told me to use my pilot certificate number with "CFI" appended, stating further that she had never seen an instance of that number not being issued. The DPE was much more cautious. $\endgroup$ Jul 18, 2019 at 22:49

1 Answer 1


I would think the newly minted CFI should use the same words the FAA uses: "Pending". Can't go wrong with that.

  • $\begingroup$ Actually you can go wrong... For example my complex rating was initially done when I had my paper license while waiting on the FAA to issue my plastic one. The CFI wrote "pending" on my logbook endorsement and it is very much invalid. I asked another CFI to fix it (because my original CFI took a job at an airline) and they wouldn't touch it without going through the training again. $\endgroup$
    – Ron Beyer
    Jun 14, 2019 at 20:41
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ That one CFI refused to accept it out of what is most likely ignorance doesn't mean he was right or that the endorsement is invalid. If it has the name of the CFI you can look it up on the FAA airman database, and the FSDO is the last word, not some random CFI. :) $\endgroup$ Jun 15, 2019 at 9:15

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