Adventures in Living.

Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQs)


 

 

 


 

 
Are Idaho licensed engineers now subject to the Rules of Continuing Professional Competency I see on your website?

Short answer - Yes.

Long answer - The changes in the Idaho Code as a result of the passage of HB 380 last legislative session (2008) and which went into effect on 1 July 2008, enables the Board to require CPD for both engineers and land surveyors. Implementation of that authority is in IDAPA 10.01.04 Rules of Continuing Professional Development for Land Surveyors which places the requirement on both land surveyors and engineers as of May 08, 2009. The engineers are exempt, though, from the date of implementation (May 8, 2009) until their first biennial renewal after that date. At that renewal they must start collecting CPD hours to comply with the requirements. If you collect any PDHs in the current renewal period while you are exempt from the requirement, you may carry forward up to 30 PDHs into the next period.top

Do Idaho licensed engineers now submit their log and records of Continuing Professional Competency on renewal?

Short answer - No.

Long answer - If you look at the Rule, which is available on our website and always at http://adm.idaho.gov/adminrules/rules/idapa10/0104.pdf you will note you are only required to produce your records when audited. You will be notified by the Board office should you be the subject of an audit. You are not required to submit them at any other time.top

I'm interested in becoming licensed as an Professional Engineer (or Professional Land Surveyor). Without scouring all the laws and rules, is there a summary of what qualifications I need?

The Applications link in navigation bar at the left summarizes the forms required and the information and qualifications needed, as well as linking you to the Law and Rules Compendium and the Application packages.top

Do I get a renewal card/certificate upon renewal by mail as a Business (P.E. or P.L.S or Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern)?

For P.E. or P.L.S.: You're wallet card is printed on your renewal notice top portion.

For a Business or Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern: No receipt and no new wall certificate (replacement wall certificates may be ordered) will be issued.

For all categories: You can check your current expiration at http://ipels.idaho.gov/rostersearch.cfm.top

There's an engineer in our office for whom I need to renew the license. Is there a unique number assigned to him on this renewal form? To what address do I mail the money?

For P.E.: The number is P-# on the renewal form.

For a combination PE/LS: The number is PL-# on the renewal form.

For Land Surveyor: The number is a L-# on the renewal form.

No receipt will be issued. Your cancelled check or money order is your receipt.

For all categories: You can check your current expiration at http://ipels.idaho.gov/rostersearch.cfm.

The address is printed on the renewal form and a pre-addressed envelope is included in the mailing. Our address is:

Idaho Board for Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors
1510 E Watertower St STE 110
Meridian, ID 83642-7993top

I'm a building official and want to know is it required for an Engineer to submit an original signature on their plans when submitting for a building permit?

Idaho Code states: "The seal and signature of the licensee and date shall be placed on all original documents in such a manner that such seal, signature and date are reproduced when the original document is copied."

Generally speaking, the engineer possesses the original document and stores it in his or her office. When copies or prints of that document are made, the seal and signature and date are reproduced, so an "original" or "wet" signature is not produced on copies which are typically submitted to the regulatory bodies for review and permitting. Engineers are not required to have an original signature on plan sets submitted for issuance of building permits.top

I'm past my birth month and don't recall getting a renewal notice. Can I print one from the web or just mail in the money? What is the late fee?

The late fee is 20% of the renewal amount per month or any portion thereof. There is no late fee for EI/LSI/Retired licensees. You can email the Board Office at edith.williams@ipels.idaho.gov with your address, and we'll mail you another notice. Most of the time, the notice was mailed to the address on file, which wasn't updated by the licensee (as required) when the licensee moved, changed jobs, or otherwise changed addresses. Check http://ipels.idaho.gov/rostersearch.cfm to verify the contact information on file.top

I let my Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern certificate go past the renewal date. What do I have to do to get it reinstated?

The Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern certificate doesn't ever "expire." Without renewing, we don't keep you on the mailing list of "current" Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern's. To get back on the mailing list, simply request a renewal notice to be sent to you, and then send it in with the Engineer Intern or Land Surveyor Intern renewal fee.top

I am licensed in Canada as a P.Eng. What do I need to do to get licensed as a P.E. in the State of Idaho?

If you're licensed as a P.E. in any other jurisdiction of the United States, or you have been licensed and practicing in Canada for over 8 years with no disciplinary actions against you (see Idaho Code 54-1219), you may complete an Application for Licensure by Comity. If not, fill-out the Application for Assignment to the Fundamentals Exam, and provide all the necessary documentation including college transcripts. A local law and rules examination may also be required.top

If a client does not require (or request) that certain documents be stamped, does the client accept responsibility for the implementation of those designs?

Idaho Law clearly says that whenever you submit final plans to a client or to a public or governmental agency, you must stamp, sign, and date. If it is not final, it must be marked as "Not for construction" or "draft" (or similar words). Your client does not have the 'option' of stamped or unstamped drawings. You either need to stamp the final plans or indicate that they are not final by marking them as noted above.top

I have my A.A.S. in Land Surveying and two years of notable experience. According to the rules in Idaho, I will be eligible to take my exam for the Fundamentals of Surveying in the Fall of 2008. I am planning on taking that exam, but I am concerned that it may be a waste of time and money for the reason that I will not be eligible to take my L.S. exam. Is this correct? From the information that I have gathered, I will not be eligible to take my L.S. exam (presuming I pass the Fundamentals exam) until the year 2011 which puts me beyond the 2010 mark.

The law which requires a 4-year degree in order to be assigned to the F.S. or L.S. exam after July 1, 2010 was passed in 2002. The reason there was an eight-year gap between the passage of the law and the effective date of the requirement was to allow persons interested in becoming a professional land surveyor time to obtain the necessary education and to put them on notice well in advance of the requirement. In any event, effective July 1, 2010, the law will require a four-year degree in order to be assigned to either the F.S. or P.S. exam. Whether or not you choose to apply for the F.S. exam is your decision. An alternative you may want to consider is seeking a license in another jurisdiction. If you are licensed in another jurisdiction prior to July 1, 2010, the law requires the Board to measure your credentials against the law that was in effect in Idaho at the time you were licensed in the other jurisdiction.top

I need to renew my license. Can I do that online or over the phone, and pay by credit card?

At this time we cannot accept renewals online, over the phone, or credit card payments. We expect to upgrade our system in the future.top

I've been assigned to the exam here in Idaho, but I would like to take the test in another state - is that possible?

Although we used to allow that, we no longer do for security reasons. For the same reason, we also will not proctor an NCEES exam for any other jurisdiction.top

We sent our renewal form and payment some time ago. Did you receive it?

We moved to our current office location (1510 E Watertower St STE 110, Meridian, Idaho 83642-7993) several years ago. At that time, we notified all license and certificate holders of the address change. However, that information might not have been forwarded to your Accounts Payable division—which results in checks being auto-addressed to our old location. Unfortunately, our mail forwarding orders expired (USPS Regulation is one year maximum) and sometimes it takes weeks before your mailing is returned as "undeliverable."

Check with your Accounts Payable division to verify the address to which they mailed the check. If the check was cashed, please fax or email us a copy of the pertinent information so that we can research our records with the State Treasurer's Office.top

What titles can an engineer-in-training use and what titles can an engineer use?

The Board has expressed opinions previously that use of the title "engineer" is not protected, but use of any title that implies that the person is licensed is protected. Obviously "professional engineer" is protected, as would be "licensed engineer" or "civil engineer" or any other discipline preceding "engineer" in a discipline used for licensing purposes. The Board has previously expressed an opinion that the title "Project Engineer" is not protected, but if a person is certified as an Engineer Intern, their title should reflect the same with those words or the acronym "E.I." In this case, the use of the title "Design Engineer" would likely not be a problem so long as it included "Engineer Intern". Like some other states, the title "Graduate Engineer" would not be a problem, but again, tell the whole story and include "E.I." so no one will be misled regarding your licensure status.top

What initials can a Professional Engineer use behind his name?

Idaho licenses persons "generically" as opposed to "by discipline" so individuals are licensed as PE's regardless of the exam they take for licensing purposes. Idaho does not object to discipline designations such as C.E., M.E., E.E. or S.E. if that indicates the principal area of practice. The Board has previously expressed an opinion that a PE who has not passed the SE exams may still use the initials "S.E." in their title if structural engineering is their principal area of practice.top

Can a PE or PLS digitally sign or seal their work?

Yes! The statute for sealing work is found in http://www.legislature.idaho.gov/idstat/Title54/T54CH12SECT54-1215.htm (see 54-1215 3(a)). Therein it allows such work to be done with use of "a rubber stamp, crimp or electronically generated image." It goes on in the paragraph to say that "If the signature is handwritten, it shall be adjacent to or across the seal." And "A facsimile signature generated by any method will not be acceptable unless accompanied by an electronic signature." The electronic signature and electronically generated image sections were added in the 2002 Legislative Session.

Further, the definition of "signature" is found in subparagraph (14) of the Idaho Code (54-1202) pertaining to Engineers and Land Surveyors at http://www.legislature.idaho.gov/idstat/Title54/T54CH12SECT54-1202.htm

The Idaho Code that allows electronic signatures for business and describes their required characteristics is found at http://www.legislature.idaho.gov/idstat/Title28/T28CH50.htm.

Autodesk in their AutoCadd and Acrobat products facilitates this electronic signing process and embeds the required electronic verification methodology. The Board approved a White Paper on E-Signatures and electronic files (revised 12/13/13).   top

If I (or we) only contract our engineering services to a federal government agency here in Idaho, are we exempt from the licensure requirement?

Although the Idaho Code doesn't exempt you, since your offering engineering services here in Idaho, the courts have decided that state licensing laws cannot regulate with whom the federal government contracts.
see Leslie Miller, Inc. v. Arkansas, 352 U.S. 187, 190, 77 S.Ct. 257 (1956); having said that, if you offer your services to anyone other than the federal government, you need to be licensed.top

Elevations Certificates -- can engineers and surveyors sign and seal??

See 54-1202 (10) & (11)
Prior to the amendment to the code in July, 2012, which added the words "or to certify elevation information", there was no mention of elevations in the code for either engineers or surveyors. The discussion regarding elevation certificates provided an opportunity to inject the 3rd dimension, elevations, into the code.
Engineers went about their work designing and certifying plans for roads, sewers, water, grading and drainage, hydrologic studies and the determination of the base flood elevation (where FEMA did not have a published BFE and an engineer probably did the BFE for the mapping). All of these plans and studies required the engineer to certify elevations.
Surveyors performed and certified topographic surveys, bench mark networks, elevations of buildings & radio towers, surveys for engineering design and FEMA elevation certificates. When surveyors stamped these drawings or reports, they were certifying elevations.
Now that the code has been amended, what has changed in practice? Nothing!
The amendment merely codified what was already being practiced. It does not encourage working beyond the area of expertise or allow anything that was not already being done. It does not tell an engineer to do surveys for FEMA elevation certificates, nor does it tell a surveyor to do hydrologic studies or road, drainage and sewer plans.
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