Due to an increase in application volume and ongoing technical difficulties with credential production equipment at the U.S. Coast Guard's National Maritime Center (NMC), merchant mariner credential (MMC) applicants are experiencing issuance delays.
NMC credential printers remain operational but at a reduced capacity. The NMC said it is working to address the problems. While the NMC is unable to provide exact timeframes for completion of MMCs, it said they are processing applications and producing MMCs as quickly as possible.
Mariners can expect to receive a status update e-mail at each stage of the application, including upon issuance of their credentials. These technical problems do not affect credential endorsements or medical certificates. For the most up to date status information, use the NMC's online tool to check the status of applications.
NMC processes applications on a first in, first out basis. For those mariners whose credential is ‘Approved to Print’ (which can be seen using the online tool), and when it is critical to vessel operations or an applicant’s employment, please contact the NMC Customer Service Center and which will attempt to prioritize printing of the MMC.
Mariners can also request expedited mailing of their MMC or medical certificate, which includes the ability to track the package. Full instructions are available on the NMC website detailing the expedited mailing process.
As a reminder it is recommended to apply at least 90 days in advance. For renewals, mariners can apply up to eight months early with no change between expiration and renewal dates.
Mariners may contact the NMC Customer Service Center via Live Chat or by calling 1-888-IASKNMC (427-5662) for assistance. For a complete list of important announcements, see the NMC Announcements on the NMC Home Page.