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U.S. Coast Guard Exams for Deck Endorsements Renewal  - Deck Officer and Deck Rating Renewal Examinations

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USCG licenses are valid for five years from the original date of issuance or renewal. The license can be renewed within one year before the expiry date of the license. There is a grace period of one year after the expiry of the license and, during the grace period, the license holder is not allowed to operate vessels.

To renew a Merchant Mariner Credential, the applicant apply for renewal at the nearest REC along with supporting documents such as a copy of the license (front and back), medical and drug certificate, and be able to show 360 days of service during the past five years. Renewal examinations are open book exercises and is mailed to the applicant.

If renewal requirements cannot be met, one can apply for a continuity of endorsement which allows the license holder to keep the license. One may remove the continuity endorsement restrictions after meeting the renewal requirements.

cargo ship deck rating renewal

You may also read: USCG License Requirements



A mariner seeking an original national endorsement or raise of grade based on training or service started on or after March 24, 2014, will be examined under the requirements of the final rule published by the Coast Guard on December 24, 2013, (78 FR 77796) . Those who started before March 24, 2014, will be examined under the regulations and policy in effect before that date unless they have specifically requested to examine for their endorsement under the final rule 78 FR 77796.

USCG Renewal examinations are open book exercises issued to the mariner by the Regional Exam Centers. It is recommended that completed exercises be returned to the Regional Exam Center for scoring within thirty days in order to assure the examination cycle, including retakes, is completed within ninety days. In no case will a renewal exercise be accepted if returned, based on the postmark date, more than 90 days from the original mailing date.

Applicants who do not have sea service or refresher training take Rules of the Road Renewal Open Book Exercise and the Renewal Open Book Exercise. Applicants renewing with closely related service take only the Rules of the Road Renewal Open Book Exercise.

Master or Mate Great Lakes and Inland Endorsement Renewal Exams

master mate gl inland renewal exams
Table: Master or Mate Great Lakes and Inland Renewal Exam Details Credits: USCG 

  • Rules of the Road module will either be Inland and International or Inland Rules depending on the endorsement

Disclaimer: For general information purpose only. Please check with USCG for the accurate and latest information