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Accredited Marine Surveyor (AMS) & Surveyor Associate Programs and Specialized Designations in Yachts & Small Craft, Hull & Machinery, Cargo, Engines, and Commercial Workboat

sams usa

Established in 1980s and based in Jacksonville, FL, the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors® (SAMS®) is an organization of professional marine surveyors. SAMS has two membership classes of marine surveyors, the Accredited Marine Surveyor (AMS®) and the Surveyor Associate (SA). Accredited Marine Surveyor (AMS) members are surveyors who have accumulated time in the profession, and have proven the technical skills necessary for designation as AMS.

Surveyor Associate (SA) program is for less experienced members to participate in SAMS and hone their skills under the guidance of AMS member. Affiliate members benefit from the association with the AMS members, are professionals, corporations, and organizations active in the marine field. Once each year, we hold our Annual Meeting & Educational Symposium for members across the globe, and discuss such topics as standards, recommended practices, damage avoidance, advanced inspection methods, and legal liabilities.

Accredited Marine Surveyors are expected to follow a course of continuing education to maintain their accreditation. SAMS has been designated by USCG as an Accepted Third Party Organization.

sams yacht survey

Certification & Training Programs



Accredited Marine Surveyor (AMS) Program

  • Candidates must be currently practicing marine surveyors with at least five (5) years surveying experience, accumulated within the past ten (10) years, in the field of expertise which accreditation is desired.  
  • Candidates must complete an application form, supply a complete resume and submit for review a number of surveys (one survey for each of last five years of active surveying)
  • Candidates must successfully complete a written exam on their selected field of accreditation.
  • Applicants must agree to participate in continuing education programs and meet all requirements of continuing

Surveyor Associate Program

  • Applicants must be marine surveyors and have less experience and abide by the By-Laws, Code of Ethics, Standards, official decisions and amendments.
  • Applicants must complete an application form, provide a complete resume and submit for review survey reports (minimum of one survey report ) prepared by the applicants.
  • Participate in SAMS continuing education programs

Specialization Designations for AMS Members

  • Y, SC - Yachts, Small Craft (SAMS Yachts and Small Craft examination): Surveying experience on yachts and/or small commercial vessels up to 200 Gross Domestic Registered Tons with passing grade on the Yachts and Small Craft examination.
  • H&M - Hull and Machinery (SAMS Hull and Machinery examination): Surveying experience on commercial vessels for five of the last ten years and has attained a passing grade in the examination (A member who holds an Unlimited Merchant Mariners license for Third Mate, Third Engineer or higher category is considered to have met the examination requirements).
  • C - Cargo (SAMS Cargo Examination): Performed surveys of the loading, unloading, inspection and shipment of cargo on merchant vessels for five of the last ten years and passed the exam.
  • E - Engines (SAMS Engine Examination): Survey experience of marine engines, of 500 hp or greater, for five of the last ten years and passed the exam.
  • CW - Commercial Workboat (SAMS Commercial Workboats Examination): Marine survey experience of inspected or uninspected commercial workboats,  generally below 1600 GT, for five of the last ten years, and has obtained a passing grade in the exam.

CE Training Programs & Seminars

  • Masterclass in Marine Warranty Surveying (by SAMS): A must-do course for those intending to enter the marine warranty surveying profession with much useful information for experienced marine surveyors. The masterclass will broaden and deepen your knowledge of all aspects of marine warranty surveying
  • Applying Infrared (IR) Thermography to Marine Surveying (by Allinson Infrared Inspection Services)
  • Yacht and Small Craft Surveying (by Chapman School of Seamanship)
  • Fundamentals of Damage & Claims Survey Class (by Chapman School of Seamanship)
  • ABYC Educational & Certification Courses Courses (by American Boat and Yacht Council)
  • Houston Marine Courses
  • American Institute of Marine Underwriters (AIMU) Courses
  • Diploma in Ship Building and Ship Repair (by Maritime Training Academy -MTA)
  • Fisher Maritime Courses
  • Surveyors Workshop & Marine Surveying Course (by Landing School)
  • Basic Dry Dock Training Course (by DM Consulting)
  • IBEX-International Trade Event Seminars
  • Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club Seminar