Certificates of Competency (COC)

Table of contents

Things YOU should know!

We’ve been getting a lot of inquiries about Perpetual CoC’s (tickets) not to mention others such as Coxswain’s, Engineering and others.

Before we get into that let’s address an issue that has been very prevalent for years and that is currency of your ticket or tickets.

It is YOUR responsibility to ensure your tickets (CoC) are current AT ALL TIMES!

It is NOT up to your employer to ensure they are up to date and current. Although many do due to people not ensuring they are current.

Also, to be ‘current’ your first aid MUST be current as well.

That’s a fact that many people miss but it it’s a requirement that you first aid is current at all times.

Now onto one of the big questions we’ve been getting….

Perpetual Tickets!

State issued perpetual certificates of competency are recognised by AMSA within the state or territory it was issued provided they have not been discontinued by that state of territory.

If you wish to use a perpetual certificate of competency outside of its original state of issue, you will need to contact the new state maritime authority to confirm if it is recognised. If recognised, AMSA will also recognise it for use in that state or territory.


The other question we’ve been getting is who can legally stand a navigation watch? Below outlines the requirements for you.

Coxswain Grade 1 holders may only operate as a Mate in inshore waters* on vessels <24m.

For a mate on vessels operating beyond inshore waters a Master <24m NC is required.

A Watchkeeper Deck <500GT certificate of competency is equivalent to a Master <24m and may operate as a Master <24m in domestic waters.

* Inshore Waters is within 15 nm to seaward from the baseline of any of the following

  • the Australian mainland;
  • the Tasmanian mainland;
  • a recognised island; or
  • sheltered water limits

Shorlink’s Recommendation

We recommend that if you’re the holder of a perpetual CoC, you move your ticket to an AMSA CoC as it allows you to operate Australia wide. This eliminates the need to go to other states to seek approval if required which they may reject.


Be sure to monitor when your tickets are due for renewal. If you have a diary make an entry noting the due dates or better still set up a Licence log which lists:

  • name of ticket, e.g. Master <24 m NC
  • name of certificate, e.g. First Aid
  • due dates of all
  • any other relevant information

Excel is ideal for this. If you’re not up to speed with Excel and would like an Excel licence log – contact our office as we have them available. We can even assist you in how to maintain it.

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