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Licensing FAQs

Q – Where can I find information about license exams?

A – The exams for Site Safety Managers, Private Elevator Agency Directors and Elevator Inspectors are given by Prometric, a third-party testing organization. For information about test dates and locations for these exams, call the Licensing Unit at (212) 393-2259.

Exams for Plumbers, Fire Suppression Piping Contractors, Welders, Riggers, Sign Hangers, Engineers, Oil Burner Equipment Installers, Hoist Machine Operators and Electricians are given by the NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services. For information about test dates and locations, please contact DCAS at (212) 669-7206.

Read the Exams and Qualifications section of our Web site for a complete list of contact information.

Q - What are the requirements to be a licensed plumber?

A - Read the Exams and Qualifications section of our Web site for requirements or view our How to Become a New York City Licensed Master Plumber guide.

Q – How do I check if my insurance is up to date?

A – Insurance status information is available on the Buildings Information System.

Q – When is my license renewal application due?

A - All renewal applications are due between 30 and 60 days prior to the license expiration date.

Q - Does my application have to be typewritten?

A - Yes. You can fill out an online version of the application on our Web site, in the Licensing Forms section.

If you do not have access to a computer, public terminals are available on the 6th floor in the Licensing unit area of the Buildings Department at 280 Broadway in Manhattan.

What are the Licensing Unit's office hours?

A - For Master Plumber, Fire Suppression, Rigger and Sign Hanger renewals and all original license and registration applicants, the Licensing unit's hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.

For all General Contractor transactions and Site Safety Coordinator certifications, the Licensing unit's hours are 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm Site Safety Coordinator applicants must make an appointment by calling (212) 393-2259.

Q - What can I do if I failed the background investigation required to obtain a license?

A - Site Safety Manager and Elevator agency applicants may file an appeal with the Buildings Special Investigation Unit (BSIU) in writing at 83 Maiden Lane, 4th Floor New York, NY 10038. Site Safety Coordinators may file an appeal with Internal Audits and Discipline (IAD) at 11 Park Place, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10007. All appeals must be filed within 60 days of the denial notification.

Q - Where should I renew my electrical license?

A- Bring your electrical license application to the Buildings Department Licensing unit at 280 Broadway, 6th Floor, at Chambers Street in Lower Manhattan.

Q - Where should I send my firm account payment?

A- Payments may be made in person or mailed to:

Buildings Department
Electrical Division

280 Broadway, 4th Floor
New York, NY 1007

Mailed payments should be made by company check or money order. Include the firm number and license number on check. For payments made in person, we will also accept cash and credit cards.

Q - Can I check my firm account balance before the next statement?

A - Yes. Firm account balances are available on our website. Access the Buildings Information System, and select “B” Skilled Trades Licensee Search. Enter your firm or license number.
You will need your licensee PIN number to access your balance.

Q - What if I do not know my firm account PIN number?

A - For confirmation of a PIN number, the licensee must bring their current electrical license card, with a driver license, passport or green card to the Licensing unit 280 Broadway, 6th Floor, at Chambers Street in Lower Manhattan. The hours of operation are 9:00 am through 1:00 pm, Monday through Friday.

Q - What should I do if I have a dispute with one or more of the transactions on my account statement?

A - Fill out the Electrical Firm Adjustment Request Form (LIC37), and submit it by mail to:

Buildings Department  
Central Operations Cashier
280 Broadway, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Include supporting documentation with your adjustment form. If your adjustment is approved, it will be reflected on your next account statement. If it is denied, you will be notified by mail. Note: The Department does not accept adjustment requests by phone.

Q - What should I do if completion fees appear on my statement incorrectly?

A - Fill out the Electrical Firm Adjustment Request Form (LIC37), and submit it by mail to:

Buildings Department
Licensing Unit
280 Broadway, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Q - Who do I contact with questions about electrical permits, applications, inspections, etc?

A - Contact the Electrical Permits, Applications or Inspection Unit.

Under which circumstances must I appear before the Electrical Board?

A - An appearance before the Electrical Board is required for all original electrical license applicants, late renewals and persons who desire to changeover or reissue a license.

Who needs to complete the full General Contractor Registration?

A - All General Contractors who pull New Building (NB) permits for one-, two- and three-family homes must register at the Licensing unit. No NB permits for this type of structure will be issued to non-registered General Contractors beginning November 1, 2008.

Q - What insurance certificates are required for General Contractor Registration?

A - All contractors completing the full registration process must have proof of workers' compensation, disability and liability insurances. Liability insurance is not required if you are simply updating or obtaining a tracking number, unless it is necessary for a particular permit. If liability insurance is required, you must submit it to the Licensing unit under your tracking number. Please read our Guidelines for Keeping Insurance Current.

Q - How do I find out if my contractor has insurance?

A - You can check the status of a licensee's insurance on the Buildings Information System.

Q - How can I find out if the plumber I have contracted with is licensed?

A - You can check the status of a license on the Buildings Information System. You may search for licensees with either their last name, license number or business name.

Q - How can I find out if there are any outstanding complaints against a licensee?

A - Contact the Buildings Special Investigations Unit (BSIU) in writing at 83 Maiden Lane, 4th Floor NY, NY 10038.

Q - Where do I go to make complaints against a licensed Plumbing and/or Fire Suppression company?

A -Submit complaints to the Buildings Special Investigations Unit (BSIU) in writing at 83 Maiden Lane, 4th Floor NY, NY 10038.

Q - How do I get a batch report for my Master Plumber or Master Fire Suppression Contractor license?

A -You must request a batch report through the Buildings' Enforcement unit by mail, fax or e-mail. Please send requests to:

Buildings Department
Attention: LMP/FS Batch Run Requests
280 Broadway, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10007
Fax: (646) 500-6249

Q - How can I find out if I was overcharged for the work performed?

A - The Department of Buildings does not have any jurisdiction over the fee charged to consumers by contractors. Contact the  Department of Consumer Affairs.

Q - My license has been expired for more than one year. How do I reinstate it?

A - Licensees expired between one year and five years are subject to Department approval for reinstatement, provided applicants prove to be competent in their field. Please read Reinstatement Process for Expired Licenses for more information.

The Buildings Department will not reinstate licenses expired more than five years. Instead, applicants must reapply for the license by meeting the original requirements for that license, including any examination and investigation requirements.

Q - Is a license required to operate a crane?

A - Yes. A Hoisting Machine Operator license is required for the operation of a crane, derrick, boom truck or cherry picker. The license must be available for inspection at the work site. License classifications vary depending upon the machine's capacity, height and boom length. For more information, contact the Buildings Department's Licensing Unit.

Q - What documents are required for Rigging Foreman "tear-off" cards? 

A - For information, read the New Rigging Foreman 'Tear-off' Cards notice.

Q - How do I become a Site Safety Coordinator?

A - To learn more about qualifications and requirements to become a Certified Site Safety Coordinator, read How to Become a Site Safety Coordinator.

Q - What is the difference between Site Safety Coordinator Certification, Site Safety Manager Certification and Construction Superintendant Registration?

A - Only Site Safety Managers may work on New Buildings (NB) or Demolitions (DM) of buildings that are 15 stories or more. Site Safety Coordinators may work on demolition or new construction sites that are 10 to 14 stories. Construction Superintendants may supervise sites from 1 to 9 stories (including one-, two-, and three-family homes/garages).

Q - What is the renewal process for Hoist Machine Operators, Master Riggers and Tower Crane Riggers?

A - Please read the New Renewal Procedures for Hoist Machine Operators, Master Riggers and Tower Crane Riggers notice.

Q - How do I get my Business Address approved for my Master Plumber, Fire Suppression, Rigger, Electrician, Sign Hanger, Oil Burner or Elevator Agency License?

A - To have your Business Address verified for office and/or shop use for your license, please fill out the LIC33 form and submit it to the Licensing unit via fax, mail or in person at:

Buildings Department
Licensing Unit
280 Broadway, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Please allow 2-3 weeks from application submission for notification.

Q - How do I become a Registered Filing Representative?

A - Please see How to Obtain a Department of Buildings Issued Identification Card notice.

Q - Where can I take a Buildings Department-approved Site Safety course?

A - Please read the Site Safety School Contact Information notice for a list of all approved schools issuing Site Safety courses.

How do the new license terms and fees affect me?

A - Please view the Licensing Fees Schedule. Master Plumbers, Master Fire Suppression Contractors and Hoisting Machine Operators may view the notice entitled Licensing Term and Fee changes.

Q - Where do I take the examination to get my plumbing or fire suppression license?

A - For information regarding the examination to obtain a plumbing or fire suppression license, please contact NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services, Division of Citywide Personnel Services Application Section.

Q - How do I find out if a particular person is licensed?

A - To find out if a contractor licensed by the Department of Buildings has insurance, check the Department’s Buildings Information System by using the Skilled Trades Licenses Search. You can find a licensee’s business address, insurance status and license status. To see a list of the types of contractors licensed by the Department of Buildings visit the Licensing Section or you can contact the Licensing Division at 280 Broadway.

Q - What license is required for suspension scaffold work?

A - A Master Rigger or Special Rigger must be contracted for the work. Also every worker must be employed by the Master or Special Rigger or their company. For more information, contact the Licensing Division or the Cranes & Derricks Division.

 

Other Related Links:
Buildings Information System
Licensing Forms
Other Frequently Asked Questions A -L
Other Frequently Asked Questions M -Z
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