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RE: Use of seal, stamp or title by unregistered person

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In a recent discussion with the Architectural Licensing division of the
California Department of Consumer Affairs, there is no area of
engineering that an architect is not allowed to wet stamp as the
professional in responsible charge. The architect need not have any
understanding of these areas of engineering (irregardless of what fields
are considered) so long as the engineer (who need not be licensed) has
acted as a consultant to the Architect.
This came up in a discussion where an architect was hired and paid
$1,500.00 to review and sign structural analysis, drawings, truss design
calculations and architectural products for low-rise buildings that were
designed outside the United States (we are an hour from the Mexico
border).
The issue of code compliance is left to the building department and if
errors or omissions are found on the plans, the responsibility lies with
the architect to oversee his consultants to correct the problem or let
the Architect assume responsibility. However, unless damage or a
collapse that is of major structural damage or results in loss of life,
the architect may never be taken into court or sued.
Wet stamping is allowed under the Architects Business and Professional
Practice and is considered normal practice where the Architect hires a
consultant and assumes responsibility for that consultant.

Personally, I believe this creates a dichotomy between engineering
practice (engineers are not allowed to review the work of others and
stamp it off as the professional in responsible charge unless the
consultant has performed the work under the direct supervision of the
engineer. Although restricting, my discussions with BORPELS a few years
ago got them to admit that there is a grey area where electronic work is
transmitted over distance by sub-contracted consultants such as
draftsmen. The bottom line is that the engineer must assume total
responsibility and is expected to be involved in the design of the
project and not simply to provide a hired stamp.

Sincerely,
Dennis S. Wish, PE
California Professional Engineer
Structural Engineering Consultant
http://www.structuralist.net
dennis.wish(--nospam--at)verizon.net



-----Original Message-----
From: desi j kiss [mailto:djkiss55(--nospam--at)juno.com] 
Sent: Monday, May 19, 2003 9:00 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: Use of seal, stamp or title by unregistered person


In addition to section 6732 of the Professional Engineers Act and
section 8725 of the professional Land Surveyors Act what other
legislative sections would apply to the fact that registered architects
in the State of CA are not allowed to stamp grading, site and drainage
plans? Thank you in advance.


Desi J. Kiss, MS, PE
DJK ENGINEERING  
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
http://djkeng.tripod.com


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