Booking your examination in advance.

We recommend booking your BSS examination well in advance of the expiry date of the old certification.

The validity of a successful BSS examination is ordinarily four years minus one day.

Thus the usual date of expiry will be the day before the date of examination 4 years hence. For example, if a BSSC is issued on the 15/8/2014, the expiry date is 14/8/2018.

ER 4-2013 Cert expiry date detail.gif

However, many navigation authorities are now reminding boat owners by letter or email to renew their boat's BSS validity in advance of the expiry date. In some cases these messages go out three months in advance of that expiry date.

BSS examinations can be carried out in advance without disadvantage as the examiner will, under very specific circumstances extend the expiry date of the new certification to align it with the expiry of the current certificate, plus four years.

Within the specified timelines, this can be very useful provision to allow owners some flexibility in arranging their new BSS without losing any time for the overall validity of the BSS.

Please remember to raise this subject in your initial dealings with the BSS examiner.

How advance booking and examination works

The current certificate must still be valid at the time of examination
Where a boat is licensed or registered against an existing, passed BSS certification, an Annex IIIa, or Annex XV Recreational Craft Directive declaration of conformity, and there is 2 months or less left until a new BSS is needed, then the expiry date for the new successful BSS examination can be extended beyond four years.

This means for example, in where a current certificate expires on 15/08/2014, and the date of a successful examination is 10/07/2014, the new BSS expiry date is 14/08/2018 and not 09/07/2018.

RCD documents' dates

Annex XV Declarations of Conformity and Annex IIIa declarations do not expire and owners should always keep them safe.

However for licensing or registration purposes only, these documents can be used for the periods described below.

  • With Annex XV RCD Declarations of Conformity, it is fourth anniversary the relevant date is the one signed of as being when the boat was first put into use on an Annex XV.
  • With an Annex IIIa, it is the first anniversary of the date the boat shell is declared as being handed over for further completion - (see the examiners support site for further information about the RCD and its associated documents).

Thus it is these anniversary dates that should be treated in the BSS extension period as BSS validity expiry dates.

Further guidance Q&A's

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the exiting BSS has already expired? NO, in that case the new BSS must last for four years minus one day.

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the boat has annex XV Declaration of Conformity that is any older than exactly 4 years i.e. a day or more past its fourth anniversary? NO, in that case the new BSS must last for four years minus one day.

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the boat has Annex IIIa Declaration of Conformity that is any older than exactly one year i.e. a day or more past its first anniversary? NO, in that case the new BSS can only last for four years minus one day.

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the exiting BSS more than two months left to run e.g. two months and a day or more? NO, in that case the new BSS can only last for four years minus one day.

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the boat has annex XV Declaration of Conformity that is younger than 3 years and 10 months? NO, in that case the new BSS must last for four years minus one day.

Can the BSS validity extension be applied to boats where the boat has Annex IIIa Declaration of Conformity that is any younger than 10 months? NO, in that case the new BSS must last for four years minus one day.

Can a new boat, not holding a BSS or Declaration of Conformity be a part of the extended expiry date process? NO, in that case the new BSS must last for four years minus one day.