What are the Requirements for a Y4 or Y3 CoC?

The Yacht Engineer CoC route is being phased out.

Yacht NoE applications are no longer being accepted by the MCA.

If you already hold a Yacht Engineer NoE, it will remain valid for use until its expiry date. JPMA continue to offer oral prep courses for the Yacht oral exams

Your written modules must be in date at the time of your CoC application.

In order to gain a Y4 or Y3 CoC, you will need to do some classroom training, some yacht and sea service, and finally an oral exam.

Depending on the amount of yacht and actual sea service you have accumulated, you may be able to go straight to Y3 level. In order to be assessed as to the level at which you may enter the yachting certification process, you must download and submit the Letter of Initial Assessment application form

NOTE: Updating Training for CoC applications- anyone serving on board ship, who holds any of the following certificates must, as of 1st January 2017, have documentary evidence of either completing the training course or updating training within the last 5 years:

  • Personal Survival Techniques
  • Proficiency in Survival Craft & Rescue Boats (CPSC & RB)
  • Proficiency in Fast Rescue Boats (PFRB)
  • Basic Fire Fighting
  • Advanced Fire Fighting

Chief Engineer Certificate of Competency – (Yacht 4)

The courses that you must undertake for Y4 are:

CPSC&RB/Advanced Sea Survival certificate¹

Advanced Fire Fighting certificate

Proficiency in Medical First Aid Aboard Ship

Skills Test certificate (exemption may be given under certain circumstances)

SV Marine Diesel Engineering certificate²

SV Auxiliary Equipment I certificate²

SV Operational Procedures, Basic Hotel Services & Ship Construction certificate²

Human Element Leadership & Management (Operational) certificate

ENG1 Medical certificate

If you are yet to receive any of these certificates, you can still apply for the NoE, but you will need to submit the certificates to the MCA after you have undertaken your oral exam

¹ NOTE: if you submit an Advanced Sea Survival certificate, your CoC will be endorsed as follows: “not for use on ships equipped with davit launched lifeboats”

² NOTE: MIN 594 details the new requirements for obtaining a Y4 CoC. After 31st July 2018 the Y4 modules will cease to exist. You must therefore undertake the SV versions of all three modules when applying for a Y4 CoC. If you have already completed the Y4 modules these are still valid for 3 years from the date on your pass certificate, and can be used towards your Y4 CoC. If you need to re-sit a Y4 written exam after 31st July, you may sit the SV version of the exam whilst holding a Yacht course completion certificate – you do not have to sit the SV version of the module again.

In all cases, you must undertake the MCA oral for Y4.

You may continue along the Y route, but when moving on to Y3, you must sit the SV Auxiliary Equipment II module in addition to the requirements detailed in MSN 1859.

Required Service:

If you hold MEOL, you need to have 12 months service as a yacht engineer, on yachts of 350kW or more in propulsion power, which must include at least 6 months actual sea service, whilst holding the MEOL(Y) or MEOL (MN)


if you are going straight for the Y4 CoC, you need to prove 42 months service as a yacht engineer, with a minimum of 12 months on yachts of 350kW or more in propulsion power, which must include at least 6 months actual sea service


6 months service as a yacht engineer, on yachts of 350kW or more in propulsion power, whilst holding a MN Senior Marine Engine Operator licence (SMEOL), which must include at least 3 months actual sea service

Chief Engineer Certificate of Competency – (Yacht 3)
(Chief Engineer “Service Endorsement”)

The courses that you must undertake for Y3 are:

Y3 Chief Engineer Statutory & Operational Requirements

SV Auxiliary Equipment II certificate (if you completed SV Aux Equipment I in lieu of Y4 Aux Equipment – see note 2 above)

Human Element Leadership & Management (Operational) certificate (if this wasn’t submitted with your Y4 CoC application)

Required Service:

If you hold Y4, you must prove 9 months service as a yacht engineer, on yachts of 350kW or more in propulsion power, which must include at least 3 months actual sea service, whilst holding a Chief Engineer certificate of competency (Yacht 4).


if you’re going straight for the Y3 CoC, you must prove 51 Months service as a yacht engineer, of which at least 21 months must be on yachts of 350kW or more in propulsion power,  of which 9 months must be actual sea service.


if you hold any Merchant Navy engineering qualifications, flow charts on pages 22, 23 & 24 of MSN 1859 show the entry routes for this CoC


Information about Service for both Y4 & Y3:
The qualifying yacht service must be performed in the engineering department. In the case of a dual role Engine⁄Deck candidate, half of the service is counted.

Yacht service is counted as the time spent on the vessel and excludes leave and other non-working time. At least 6 months of the yacht service must be within the 5 years preceding the application.

Yard & refitting time is accepted as yacht service, but is limited to 90 days. This cannot be counted towards actual sea service.

Actual sea service must be in the engine department onboard yachts, and is only applicable when you are actually at sea, on passage. A minimum of 4 hours or working duty in 24 hours would count as 1 full day of actual service.

Sea Service Verification Process – please click here to read about new regulations.

Applying for an NoE:

To do the final oral exam for Y4 or Y3, you will need a Notice of Eligibility. This document is issued once the MCA have assessed your eligibility, and an oral exam cannot be booked until the NoE is issued.

Your service needs to be proved with 2 forms of evidence for each vessel on which you are claiming service time. Usually a Testimonial and a Certificate of Discharge. If you have a discharge book, this can be used with a testimonial for each vessel, or if you are a member of the PYA they will attest your PYA logbook.

You must send a form of ID with your application. You can send a copy of your passport, signed by your Captain and with their CoC number noted, but you can also send any form of National ID – birth certificate or Discharge Book are usually easier to cope without!

It should be noted that written exam pass certificates have a validity of only three years. If your module pass certificates are more than 3 years old when you apply for an NoE you will have to submit new pass certificates to the MCA before they will issue an NoE.

This is all laid out in MSN 1859 (the Engineer testimonial and Certificate of Discharge can be found as an annex of the M Notice on pages 28, 29 & 30)

Update to Electronic NoE application process & online oral exams

You will need to download the NoE application form. You must complete the form and send all of your original certificates and testimonials to the MCA.
The NoE will be processed in about 28 days. Once the NoE is issued you are deemed eligible to take the oral exam.

JPMA offers oral preparation courses for the Y4 & Y3 oral exams. Click here for details.