Firefighter Eligibility Requirements

You can start thinking about becoming an FDNY Firefighter as early as 17 1/2 years of age. You should not reach your 29th birthday by the beginning of the application process. There are exceptions to this rule:

  • If you are on the Special Military list for the Firefighter Exam, you cannot turn 36 year old by the beginning of the current application period to be eligible to take the exam.
  • If you were on active military duty, you can subtract up the amount of time you spent on duty from your actual age. The maximum you can subtract is 6 years. This includes candidates on the two lists above. This rule is defined in Section 243 of New York State Military Law.

To be Hired as a New York City Firefighter, You Must:

  • Pass both the computer-based test and physical ability test.
  • Be a U.S. citizen at the time of appointment.
  • Be at least 21 years of age by time of appointment.
  • Be able to prove your identity and the right to obtain employment in the United States under the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.
  • Pass medical and psychological tests, as well as a drug screening. 
  • Demonstrate proof of good character and pass a background investigation.
  • Be able to understand and be understood in English.
  • Hold a valid New York State motor vehicle driver's license.
  • Be a resident of one of the five boroughs of New York City or live in Nassau, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Suffolk or Westchester County.

 Education/Military/Work Experience Eligibility

  • By the date of appointment, have a four-year high school diploma or its educational  equivalent.  
  • Have at least 15 college semester credits earned at an accredited college or university. 
  • OR, for applicants with a military service background, must have full-time military service with an honorable discharge.
  • OR, six months of full-time, satisfactory, paid work experience.

Other Requirements

In addition, you will be required to be a Certified First Responder with Defibrillation Certificate (CFR-D) by the end of your probationary period. FDNY provides a CFR-D training program during the probationary Firefighter training course.  Once the training course is successfully completed and you receive your certificate, $30 per pay period will be deducted until the total cost of the training course is covered.  Those who fail to obtain a CFR-D by the end of the probation period will be terminated. 

Need Help Understanding Eligibility Requirements and Exceptions?

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