Register as a Special Inspection Agency

Special Inspections are conducted during the construction process to verify that work is being done in accordance to approved plans and specifications. Special Inspections must be performed by Special Inspectors on behalf of a Special Inspection Agency.

Requirements to Register

Special Inspection Agencies – an Agency performing Special Inspections defined by Chapter 17 of the Building Code – must be registered with the Department of Buildings.

Qualifications & Attestation: All Special Inspection Agencies must ensure that the special inspectors employed by the agency meet the qualification requirements set forth in Appendix A of 1 RCNY §101-06.

Agencies' Composition & Service of Process: All Special Inspection Agencies must maintain a New York City address or have an agent in New York State to accept service. A special inspection agency must have one full-time primary director and can have up to four alternative full-time directors. The directors must not be an employee of any other agency that provides special inspection or testing services:

  • Fuel oil storage and piping
  • Fire alarm tests
  • Standpipe systems
  • Sprinkler systems
  • Emergency power systems

These agencies may have a director who satisfies the requirements of Inspection Supervisor for such tests and inspections as set forth in the qualifications.

Accreditation & Registration Classes: There are three special inspection classes: Class 1, Class 2 and Class 3. Each class is defined based on the scope of work the Special Inspection Agency will perform under 1 RCNY §101-06.

Special Inspection Agencies must obtain accreditation for all Class 1 inspections. Class 1 Special Inspection Agencies must be accredited by the International Accreditation Service, Inc. (IAS) or an equivalent accreditation agency accrediting to ASTM E329-07.

The following accrediting bodies are recognized as meeting the requirements set forth in Section (c)(3) of 1 RCNY 101-06. Accreditation of special inspection agencies is the sole responsibility of the accrediting bodies; the Department of Buildings is not involved in the accreditation process. Therefore all fees and contractual obligations are arranged through the accrediting body. Recognized accrediting bodies may not give accreditation for all special inspection categories listed in Appendix A, 1 RCNY 101-06.

Please contact the accrediting bodies for further information:

Insurance: Special Inspection Agencies must obtain insurance to perform special inspections. Professional Engineers and Registered Architects must have $500,000 in professional liability insurance. At least $1,000,000 per occurrence general liability insurance is already required for licensed trades. All Special Inspection Agencies must have workers' compensation insurance or a waiver.

*Exception: Agencies whose director is not a registered design professional and limited to performing inspections of the:

  • Fuel-oil storage and piping
  • Fire alarm tests
  • Sprinkler systems
  • Standpipe systems
  • Emergency power systems
  • Site storm drainage disposal and detention system installation.

Special Inspection Agency Registration Renewals

The term of the Special Inspection Agency registration is three years. Renewals begin on your birthday following the date of your initial registration.

Renewal Fees

  • Renewal: $90.00
  • Endorsement: $30.00 per Special Inspection Category
  • Late Renewals: $50.00 + renewal and endorsement fees
  • Renewals can be paid through the Department of Buildings' Online Renewal Payments Portal
  • Payments as a result of adding endorsements must be made by check or money order

Renewal Applications

  • SIA1 Form and Cover Sheet must be typed and mailed to the Licensing & Exams Unit 30 – 60 days prior to expiration to avoid a $50.00 late fee.
  • All supporting documents must be resubmitted at the time of renewal through the SIA Document Upload Form (create Form on site).


  • All insurance certificates must be uploaded at the time of renewal
  • A Special Inspection Agency must maintain insurance to perform Special Inspections
  • All Special Inspection Agencies must have Workers Compensation, insurance or a waiver
  • Registered Architects and Professional Engineers must have professional Liability insurance
  • Licensed trades must have General Liability insurance

Use the BISWeb Registrant Search to check your registration status.

Small Projects

A registered Design Professional with relevant experience may perform most Special Inspections in connection with the construction or alteration of Occupancy Group R-3 buildings, three stories or less in height. Additional qualifications are needed to perform Special Inspections in connection with excavation and foundation activities.

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