Getting Plans Sealed (buyer beware)

Beware when purchasing a set of plans from a website. These plans can look very nice, actually have elements that you would like to have in your own custom home. But these plans are designed generically for as broad an application as they can. Many states do not require these plans to be sealed by an Engineer or Architect. The plans also have options for basements and other foundation systems and engineering systems that are not applicable in all states.

Florida has specially stringent guidelines. Plans, in most permit areas in Florida, require a stamp. This can be quite an ordeal when one discovers that most Engineers and Architects will not place their stamp on another’s work.

The governing principles are both ethical and legal.

Taken from the Engineering Statutes 471.033 (Disciplinary proceedings):

(1) The following acts constitute grounds for which the disciplinary actions in subsection (3) may be taken:

(j) Affixing or permitting to be affixed his or her seal, name, or digital signature to any final drawings, specifications, plans, reports, or documents that were not prepared by him or her or under his or her responsible supervision, direction, or control.

If you find an Engineer or Architect who will place their seal upon another’s drawing you should be fully aware of this provision. That he or she is willing to compromise this issue may be an indication of other points of unprofessional tendancies.

We can help in such instances but must follow certain protocol.

It is best to have your project designed in Florida by a duly licensed and qualified individual. This is your best ticket to a smooth construction project and a happy ownership and use.

You can check with the Engineer Designer to help you through this maze.