Quick update: I had the ingenious idea to look up the possibilities in the relevant section of 8900.1
. Under 5-504 it states the following:
D. Procedures for Processing a Flight Instructor Certification Renewal Via U.S.*Mail. Flight instructor renewal applicants are now able to renew their flight instructor certificates on a personal computer workstation and complete an approved flight instructor refresher clinic (FIRC) over the Internet. Some flight instructor renewal applicants have inquired about being able to mail in the required documents to renew their flight instructor certificates. The Certification and General Operations Branch, AFS‑810, has approved procedures that will allow a flight instructor renewal applicant whose flight instructor certificate has not expired (meaning the flight instructor has satisfactorily accomplished the flight instructor renewal requirements and has submitted an application prior to the expiration date of his or her flight instructor certificate) to renew his/her flight instructor certificate by sending the application and superseded flight instructor certificate to his or her jurisdictional FSDO via the mail delivery. The procedural requirements that must be followed to accomplish the flight instructor renewal requirements via the mail delivery service are as follows:
1. The flight instructor renewal applicant is required to submit an original completed FAA Form*8710‑1.
2. The flight instructor renewal applicant must submit his or her permanent flight instructor certificate.
3. The flight instructor renewal applicant must submit a copy of his or her identification that contains a picture of the applicant (driver’s license, military ID card, etc.). That copy of the applicant’s identification document must be notarized by a notary public
4. If the flight instructor renewal applicant is renewing on the basis of satisfactory completion of a FIRC (i.e., §*61.197(a)(2)(iii)), the applicant will be required to submit a copy of his or her graduation certificate.
5. If the flight instructor renewal applicant is renewing on the basis of §*61.197(a)(2)(i) or (ii), the applicant must provide copies of the records that substantiate the training of “…*at least five students for a practical test for a certificate or rating and at least 80*percent of those students passed that test on the first attempt,” or having served as a “…*company check pilot, chief flight instructor, company check airman, or flight instructor in a part*121 or part*135 operation, or in a position involving the regular evaluation of pilots.” Those records must be notarized by a notary public.
6. The jurisdictional FSDO will then process the application file and issue the flight instructor renewal applicant a temporary airman certificate. The FSDO will then process the applicant’s file and temporary airman certificate to the FAA Airmen Certification Branch, AFS‑760, P.O.*Box*25082, Oklahoma*City,*OK*73125. The FSDO need not have a signed temporary airman certificate by the flight instructor renewal applicant in order to submit the applicant’s file to AFS‑760.
7. Per §*61.3(d)(1) (i.e., “or other documentation acceptable*to the Administrator”), the flight instructor renewal applicant may use the original of his or her FIRC graduation certificate and a copy of the superseded flight instructor certificate until the applicant’s permanent flight instructor certificate arrives. Or the flight instructor renewal applicant may use a copy of his or her FAA Form*8710‑1, Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application, and a copy of the superseded flight instructor certificate until the applicant’s permanent flight instructor certificate arrives.