Get a Second Opinion!
Why? I have decided to keep this post short. The professional obligation of an engineer to their client is straightforward and is spelled out clearly in the DPOR regulations, as well as the Code of Ethics for Engineers, so we are offering a brief review of these requirements herein.
1. Firms offering engineering and architectural services must have a licensed professional at the office where the services are offered – and they must physically be there a majority of the time that the office is open. There is some interpretation here, so simply ask the firm you are interviewing what licensed professional will be doing their work, and what office they work in.
2. Ask the firm you are interviewing if their recommendations for repair and/or reinforcement will be signed and sealed by a licensed professional engineer or architect, and which office that person will be working out of.
3. There are firms advertising that they have “Licensed Professional Engineers” on staff. However, unlicensed personnel from the firm are sometimes sent to the site to “diagnose” your problem. In some cases hand written contracts are issued to clients outlining repair techniques while at the site, which have not been reviewed by a Licensed Professional Engineer. We urge you not to sign these agreements and “Get a Second Opinion,” should you feel this is happening in your case.
Rule of Thumb…
It takes time (at the very least a day or two), for an engineer or architect to develop an appropriate repair for your problem. Almost never does an engineer or architect offer a hand written recommendation for repair while at the initial site visit.
Please call us if you need a second opinion.
Schnitzhofer & Associates, LLC
Consulting Structural Engineers