×
INTELLIGENT WORK FORUMS
FOR ENGINEERING PROFESSIONALS

Log In

Come Join Us!

Are you an
Engineering professional?
Join Eng-Tips Forums!
  • Talk With Other Members
  • Be Notified Of Responses
    To Your Posts
  • Keyword Search
  • One-Click Access To Your
    Favorite Forums
  • Automated Signatures
    On Your Posts
  • Best Of All, It's Free!

*Eng-Tips's functionality depends on members receiving e-mail. By joining you are opting in to receive e-mail.

Posting Guidelines

Promoting, selling, recruiting, coursework and thesis posting is forbidden.

Students Click Here

Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???
3

Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

(OP)
Hello everyone,

   I am a mechanical engineer and I have almost 4 years of experience in oilfield production\drilling equipment design.  I am currently employed at a company that is not part of this field. I developed many of the procedures and methods used at my former company because they had never had an engineer on staff.  Recently, employees from my previous company have struck out on their own and have asked me to basically do the job I used to have on the side.  My current boss and company do not have a problem with this as long as it doesn't interfere.  My question is this:  Do I have to be licensed as a PE to do this work on the side ?  It would include calculations, FEA, Material selection and procedure development. However I did all this before and I did not have my PE then either.  I haven't taken the FE yet but plan to.  Any Input ?

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

The utility of a PE is to establish credibility & procedural capability when work is done "for the public".  For your situation I'd have to say "not required" since you're just trading hours of your experience & expertise for money.  

For context:  I've spent my career mostly doing automation work in manufacturing.  I started freelancing doing the same:  mechanical design of fixtures/machines, PLC installations & programming, robot installations & programming, vision systems, etc etc etc.  I have a PE but have never needed to stamp a drawing, and a PE is not required for any of the work I did.  Once I had some yahoo ask me to put my stamp on some structrual drawings of a machine support gantry he was building, and I refused.  On another occasion my company asked me to design some gantry systems, so I made doubly sure that they would support all anticipated loads and wouldn't fall down.  But stamping was not a requirement since they were in a factory setting.

TygerDawg
Blue Technik LLC
Virtuoso Robotics Engineering
www.bluetechnik.com

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

There is a difference between getting away with something and doing it right.

There is also a difference in liability when you work for a company and offer the services on your own, even if it is the same work.

If you are designing that can affect people's safety, in a private plant or on a public road, you need proper licensing, whether or not you stamp a drawing.

It only takes one mishap or a lawsuit to undo your lifetime's earnings and more, if you do not have proper licensing and liability insurance.

Rafiq Bulsara
http://www.srengineersct.com

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

(OP)
Well I don't see it as getting away with anything. I have written my local proffesional engineering board with the exact same question.

    I was hired by this company right out of school to do this same job and there was no PE overseeing anything I did.  Now I have a PE (my boss) that will review all of my work (for a percentage). It just seems wrong that I can't do the same work just because I'm not a PE.  I plan on getting my license but for now I want to start an LLC. There should be no issues as long as I get a PE to review every thing. Does that sound correct ?

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

You can do the work as an employee of a licensed company or a person, if you are not licensed. But you cannot offer professional engineering services on your own, if you are not licensed. It is that simple. Putting any spin on it is of no use.

Is the 'boss' working at your current employer or the ex-employer? Does your boss (PE) has the contract with your client? Is he taking the responsibility in writing or will he stamp the drawings/reports, if needed? A verbal OK is worthless.

Endless discussions on similar subject have taken place on this site, you may want to do a search and refer to them.

 

Rafiq Bulsara
http://www.srengineersct.com

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Quote:

For your situation I'd have to say "not required" since you're just trading hours of your experience & expertise for money.
A rationalization with no real rationale.  Engaged in engineering for money... sounds professional to me.  Probably will sound that way to state regulators.

It really comes down to whether you are an employee or a consultant.  Have your "friends" put you on the payroll as an employee, take taxes, etc.  Anything else almost certainly crosses the line.

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Quote (clowerymech):

Now I have a PE (my boss) that will review all of my work (for a percentage).  There should be no issues as long as I get a PE to review every thing. Does that sound correct ?
Will your boss review the work as a side-favor, or will he actually be the EoR for the project?  If there's no record of him actually reviewing the work, it's as if he never saw it at all.  Is his insurance going to cover him should things go badly?  Tread carefully...

Dan - Owner
http://www.Hi-TecDesigns.com

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

(OP)
I got a reply from my local board and I will just be added to the payroll at this company so I will be "engaged In industry" and every thing will be fine . This is straight from the board investigator.

Thank you all for the input. I'm glad so many are willing to comment.

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Clowerymech:

I gave you a star for following the right procedure and getting an answer from the right authority. A good feedback.

Wish you all the best.

Rafiq Bulsara
http://www.srengineersct.com

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

(OP)
Well thank you kindly rbulsara.

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Hopefully you can get that in a letter or email from the board member.  Words can be forgotten...  nosmiley

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

(OP)
I do have it in an e-mail from the board investigator.

RE: Do I have to be a PE to do any engineering work on the side???

Sweet.  bigsmile

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

Red Flag This Post

Please let us know here why this post is inappropriate. Reasons such as off-topic, duplicates, flames, illegal, vulgar, or students posting their homework.

Red Flag Submitted

Thank you for helping keep Eng-Tips Forums free from inappropriate posts.
The Eng-Tips staff will check this out and take appropriate action.

Reply To This Thread

Posting in the Eng-Tips forums is a member-only feature.

Click Here to join Eng-Tips and talk with other members! Already a Member? Login



News


Close Box

Join Eng-Tips® Today!

Join your peers on the Internet's largest technical engineering professional community.
It's easy to join and it's free.

Here's Why Members Love Eng-Tips Forums:

Register now while it's still free!

Already a member? Close this window and log in.

Join Us             Close