Answers to the most frequently asked questions about architects and architecture
DIVISION OF PROFESSIONS
BOARD OF ARCHITECTURE AND INTERIOR DESIGN
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
SPECIFIC TO ARCHITECTS
AS OF October, 2004
I. INDUSTRY ISSUES, SCOPE OF WORK, BOARD FUNCTIONS
1. What are the functions of the Board of Architecture and Interior Design?
The Board of Architecture and Interior Design regulates Architects, Interior Designers, Threshold Inspectors, Architecture Businesses and Interior Design Businesses.
2. Does the board have a website?
Yes, you can go to http://www.myflorida.com/, click on find an agency, click on Business and Professional Regulation, click on Professions and Professional Boards on the left side of the page, once you are in the Professions web page you will locate the Board of Architecture and Interior Design
3. What is the Statute and Rule that govern Architecture and Interior Design?
Chapter 481, Part I of the Florida Statutes and Rule 61G1 of the Florida Administrative Codes.
4. What legislative bills are being discussed this session and which bills have passed?
You may obtain this information on the website http://www.myflorida.com/ (legislative update).
II. BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR LICENSURE; LICENSURE TYPES; HOW TO DETERMINE IF LICENSURE IS REQUIRED
1. What examination is required to be licensed as an architect? What is the fee for application by examination? What does the letters ARE mean?
To be licensed as an architect you must take and pass the Architecture Registration Examination (ARE). The fee to apply for the examination is $60.00. Architecture Registration Examination (ARE)
2. I would like to know the requirements to take the exam in the State of Florida?
In order to become eligible to take the examination as a Florida candidate, you will need to have at least a bachelor of architecture degree from an institution accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). Along with your degree you will need to have proof of completing one year of the intern development program (IDP) which is a minimum of 235 value units. IDP must be completed through the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) in Washington, DC. You may contact NCARB at 202.783.6500.
3. Who is NAAB?
NAAB is the accrediting board for all architecture schools in the United States as well as some Canadian schools.
4. What is IDP and value units? How do I contact NCARB about IDP? Who would I need to speak with at NCARB?
IDP is the intern development program where NCARB does an assessment of your experience, which is equated into value units. You may call NCARB at 202.783.6500, and ask for IDP assessment.
5. If my degree is not NAAB accredited is there any way that I can take the exam if I have a lot of architecture experience?
Florida does not allow candidates to take the exam based on experience alone, if your degree is not accredited the only way you can take the exam is if you return to school and receive the appropriate degree.
6. If my school if accredited by NAAB and I have a Bachelor of Science degree can I still take the exam?
A Bachelor of Science degree is a four-year program and is not acceptable in this state. You would need to continue your education and receive the five-year Bachelor of Architecture Degree.
7. When and where can I take the examination?
The architecture examination is computerized and can be taken every day. Once you are approved eligible to take the examination you will receive an authorization to test package from the Chauncey Group that will provide location information. The exams are administered at the Sylvan Learning and Testing Centers. There are several locations in Florida and throughout the United States and you can pick the one that is closest to you.
8. Can I take the exam in another state and still be considered a Florida candidate?
Yes, the examination results will always be sent to Florida from any state.
9. How do I receive the license once I have completed the exam?
You must provide proof of completing the Intern Development Program (IDP) before you will be licensed. Although you only need 235 value units to begin taking the test you need 700 value units to be licensed with a Bachelor of Architecture degree to complete IDP and 465 value units to complete IDP if you have a Maters of Architecture degree. Proof of completing IDP must come directly from the National Council (NCARB) to the department.
10. Does the State of Florida have reciprocity with other states?
No, Florida does not offer reciprocity. Florida offers endorsement, which means Florida will endorse your license from another state as long as you meet Florida?s licensure requirements.
11. What are the requirements for endorsement?
There are three ways to apply for endorsement. You can apply by NCARB
endorsement, state endorsement or direct endorsement.
12. What is NCARB endorsement and how much is the fee?
The fee for NCARB endorsement is $90.00. You must complete the department?s NCARB endorsement application and return to the department with the fee of $90.00. Or you can forward the completed department?s NCARB endorsement application including the $90.00 fee made payable to DBPR to NCARB along with your request to have NCARB transmit your council record to Florida. NCARB will enclose your completed department application with the $90.00 fee with your council in one packet to the department. The requirements to be licensed in Florida are to have at least a Bachelor of Architecture degree from a NAAB accredited school, have an active license in another state and passed all parts of the Architectural Registration Examination (ARE) in another state. If an applicant was licensed in another state after June 30, 1985, they will need to have completed the IDP program. If they were licensed in another state prior to June 30, 1984, and they do not have the required education they can still get licensed by providing proof of five educational credits awarded by NCARB. CCC - Please mail the endorsement application or refer to the web page, which offers more details regarding the education and experience requirements.
13. What are the requirements for state endorsement and how much is the fee?
The fee for state endorsement is $200.00. The applicant must provide proof of the required minimum Bachelor of Architecture degree from a NAAB accredited school, an active license in another state, passed all parts of the Architectural Registration Examination (ARE) or equivalent in another state. If you were licensed after June 30, 1985, the applicant must provide proof of NCARB IDP completion or five years of experience as a registered architect. The five years experience must begin AFTER the date of initial licensure in the original state of endorsement. The experience verification form is available in the endorsement application. CCC - Please mail the endorsement application or refer to the web page, which offers more details regarding the education and experience requirements.
14. What are the requirements for direct endorsement and how much is the fee?
The fee for direct endorsement is $200.00. The applicant must provide proof of the required minimum Bachelor of Architecture degree from a NAAB accredited school, and passed all parts of the Architecture Registration Examination (ARE) or equivalent, but they do not need an active license in another state. Direct endorsement is often used for applicants that were once licensed in the State of Florida and that license is now Null and Void. If you were licensed after June 30, 1985, the applicant must provide proof of NCARB IDP completion or five years of experience as a registered architect. The five years experience must begin AFTER the date of initial licensure in the original state of endorsement. The experience verification form is available in the endorsement application. CCC - Please mail the endorsement application or refer to the web page, which offers more details regarding the education and experience requirements.
15. Can I get licensed if I did not complete IDP?
Yes, if you have been licensed in another state for at least five years and have five-years of experience after the date of your initial licensure, you can complete the practical experience form in lieu of IDP.
16. If I was once licensed in Florida and now my license is null and void can I have it reinstated?
No, you must reapply for licensure under the current requirements. An old license number that is null and void cannot be reinstated. If your license was null and void after March 1, 1997, you will also be required to provide proof of 20 hours of continuing education in order to become licensed again.
17. If I am denied licensure can I get a refund on my application?
No. Application fees are non-refundable.
18. When would I need a license for a business?
If you do business in anything other than your legal name you are required to apply for a certificate of authorization. If you have a company registered with the Department of State, Division of Corporations as a corporation, partnership, limited liability corporation or partnership, or a fictitious name.
19. What are the requirements for a certificate of authorization (COA)?
A company is required to have a Florida licensed architect to qualify a business to receive licensure. The qualifier would also be required to be a principal officer of the business/company and listed in the Articles of Incorporation as an officer. Each branch office is required to have a licensed architect in responsible supervisory control.
20. I am a licensed Florida Architect and I live in another state, can I do business for my company?
No, in order for you to offer services for your company, the company would need to obtain the appropriate business license, certificate of authorization. You are only permitted to offer services as yourself in your legal name.
21. If I am a sole proprietor do I need a certificate of authorization?
Possibly, you can do business with your architect?s license, but only in your legal name. An example, would be John W. Brown, Architect (professional title). If you add anything to your legal name, an example, John W. Brown, Architect Planner and Designer (this is now considered a fictitious name), which requires a certificate of authorization.
22. I am not incorporated but I do business in another name, do I need any additional licensure?
Yes, you would need to obtain a certificate of authorization for a fictitious name.
23. How do we obtain a certificate of authorization in Florida for an out of state company?
You would first need to contact the Secretary of State?s office at 850.488.9000 or http://www.sunbiz.org/ to obtain a foreign corporation registration package to obtain permission to do perform business in the State of Florida. Next you would need to submit an application for a certificate of authorization to DBPR. You will also need a registered agent in the State of Florida.
24. What is a registered agent?
A registered agent is a contact for your company in the State of Florida and that person can be anyone. There are companies that act as registered agents such as CT Corporation.
25. My company is a limited liability company and we do not have officers, how do we apply for licensure?
You would apply by the same guidelines as a corporation. You would need to have one of the managing members as your qualifier and they must be listed in the articles or organization as a managing member with their duties listed.
26. If my name is in the title of the company would I need to be licensed in the State of Florida?
If the company is incorporated you can be licensed in any state, if the company is a professional association (PA) or a professional corporation (PC) everyone whose name is in the company would need to be a licensed architect in Florida.
27. I have a partnership; do all the partners need a license in Florida?
No, only one of the partners of a partnership needs to be licensed in Florida as an architect.
28. My company is currently licensed in Florida and we just changed our name. How do we change the name in your records and is there a fee?
You will need to complete a business name change application and submit the fee of $25.00.
29. My company has changed from a partnership to a corporation; do we submit a name change application?
No, you will need to obtain a new license because you have created a new company. Once you changed from a partnership to a corporation, your partnership license is no longer valid.
30. My qualifier left and we have a new one, what do we need to do?
You will need to submit that information in writing to the department, giving the departure date of your previous qualifier and the information for the new one. A company has thirty days to submit changes to the board. Reminder, the new qualifier must be a principle officer of the firm.
31. I have moved and I need to change my address, can I do it over the phone?
Yes, you can contact the Customer Contact Center, submit the change in writing via e-mail or fax, or you can change your address on the website at http://www.myflorida.com/, click on find an agency, click on Department Business and Professional Regulation, click on DBPR Online Services.
32. I want to design a house do I need to be licensed?
No, you can design a house without having a license. Refer to the exemptions in the statutes.
33. Will Florida accept a rubber stamp seal?
No, Florida will only accept a metal raised seal.
34. Can I sign another architect?s drawings?
No, you can take another architect?s drawings, review and modify them and make them your drawings and then you can sign and seal them. Please refer to Rule 61G1- 18.002, F.A.C.
35. I am an architect from a foreign country what do I need to do in order to become licensed in Florida?
Florida does not recognize licensure outside of the country; therefore you would need to apply as if you did not have a license. First you would need to have your foreign education evaluated to see if it is the equivalent of at least a Bachelor of Architecture degree in the United States. You can contact the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) to have your education equivalency performed and experience evaluated in reference to the Intern Development Program (IDP). You will need at least one year, that is 235 value units of this program in order to begin taking the exam. You can contact NCARB at 202.783.6500. Your final step would be to contact us in reference to applying for the Architecture Registration Examination (ARE).
36. If I have a complaint against an architect that is licensed or unlicensed, what do I do?
You would need to contact Smith, Thompson, Shaw, & Manausa, P.A., 2075 Centre Pointe Boulevard, Tallahassee, Florida 32308-4893, telephone 850.402.1570.
37. How do I get a list of all the licensed architects in the State of Florida?
You can obtain this information from the website of MyFlorida.com., click on find an agency, click on Business and Professional Regulation, click on Licensee Download Files.
38. If I am a licensed architect do I need to take the test to become licensed as an interior designer?
No, an architect can obtain dual licensure. The only requirement is to have an active Florida Architect license and complete the required application, instructions and information for licensure is located on the web site named, Florida Licensed Architecture Business or Individual seeking a separate interior design license.
39. If I am a licensed architect do I need to have an interior designer license to do interiors?
No, you can do interior design within the scope of your architecture contracts, but in order to offer interior design services separately you would need to obtain an interior design license.
40. If I have a licensed architecture firm can I obtain a license to do interior design without having a licensed designer work for the firm?
Yes, you can obtain a dual business license simply because you have an architecture business license. You will not need an interior designer because an architect can qualify an interior design business.
41. What are the requirements to obtain the dual business license and what are the fees?
There is no fee for the application and the only requirement is to have an active architecture business license.
42. Can an architect obtain licensure by grandfathering/grandparenting or experience alone?
No. They are required to meet the requirements as set for in question 2,12, 13, and 14.
43. How do I obtain my seal for architecture?
You may obtain your seal from an office supply company. Please refer to Rule 61G1-16, Seals and Plans or the web page at www.myflorida.com/dbpr for a picture and dimensions.
44. The individual whose name is in our company is deceased/retired can we still get a business license in our current name?
Yes, as long as the individual was once licensed and you have some type of proof of their license and their current status either deceased or retired, you can still get the business license in the existing name of the company
45. Can I qualify more than one company?
Yes, however, you can not be the responsible supervisor in control of more than one office.
46. I qualify an architectural firm or business and we have numerous branch offices that provides architectural services, do I need a licensed architect in those branch offices?
Yes. If you offer architectural services, other than marketing only, then you must have a Florida licensed architect in that branch office.
III. APPLICATION ASSISTANCE (USING THE NEW APPLICATION FORMS); FEES; ADDRESS REQUIREMENTS (LOCATION, MAILING?)
1. How can I obtain assistance on completing my application?
If you have any questions or need assistance in completing applications, please contact the Department of Business and Professional
Regulation, Customer Contact Center at 850.487.1395.
2. Where do I mail my application?
Applications can be mailed to Department of Business and Professional Regulation at 1940 North Monroe Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0783.
3. What are the fees for Architecture Applications?
Architecture Examination App ? $60.00
NCARB Endorsement ? $90.00
State Endorsement ? $200.00
Direct Endorsement ? $200.00
Certificate of Authorization ? $100.00
Threshold Building Inspector ? $100.00
Reactivation for Individual ? $200.00
Business Name Change App. ? $25.00
Architecture Continuing Education
Provider/Program Application: $25.00
Licensees seeking Ind. credit ? $25.00
Established Providers ? $25.00
Non-Established Providers Submitting One Program ? $50.00
NOTE: If a course is being submitted in conjunction with a board audit there is no charge.
IV. RENEWAL; FEES