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Revoke PE SEAL

Revoke PE SEAL

Revoke PE SEAL

If you complete a project and stamp the drawings and calculations with the PE seal in Texas and your client doesn't pay you, what recourse do you have other than to sue? Is there a way to revoke your PE seal, especially if your not in the state where the project is being installed.

RE: Revoke PE SEAL

Technically, no.  There are contractual avenues that allow you to retrieve your report/work product if you are not paid, but those are civil procedures.  In your contract, if you have an "ownership of documents" clause, you might use that to retrieve the work product.  

The "seal" is a statutory attestation of technical competence, not of contractual or financial satisfaction.

If you are still within the allowed time frame, you might consider filing a lien on the property.  The statutes vary from state to state, so you need to get the one in the state you provided the service.

If past the time for lien filing, then your only recourse is likely civil breach of contract (I hope you had a contract!).  Check with a lawyer on this one.

RE: Revoke PE SEAL

You can put a lien on the property where your design will be built.
In Florida, the process is: You serve a Notice to Owner within 15 days of finishing your work, after that you will send a Notice of Intent to Lien, and if necessary you will follow up with actually putting a lien on the property. The owner will make sure you get paid. This is a standard process for contractors and suppliers, I have never heard of Engineers using it, but I have used it myself against "forgetful" clients with great success. Of course you will loose the client, but what for do you want a client who doesn't pay you?

good luck!

RE: Revoke PE SEAL

A "Notice to Owner" is not required for Engineers to affect a lien in Florida.  Essentially only three requirements:  1) Must have contract with owner; or 2) Property must be improved, and 3) you must file within 90 days of last activity on the job.

Also, Notice to Owner should be filed BEFORE doing work.

RE: Revoke PE SEAL

Be careful here.  Are you sure the seal required wasn't the seal from the other state, not the TX seal?  IE, you could sue and then find out you're working illegally?

Engineering laws are not real clear on the issue, but the universal practice is, if a project is built in X state, it needs a X seal, even if you never set foot in that state.  Read through the disciplinary actions from several states and you'll find this carried out.

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