Sub-Chapter 1: General Provisions
§ 121. Definitions
As used in this chapter:
(1) "Architect" means a person who is licensed to practice architecture under this chapter.
(2) "Board" means the "Vermont board of architecture."
(3) "Disciplinary action" includes any action taken against a licensee by the board or on appeal from the board, when that action suspends, revokes, limits, or conditions a license in any way, and includes reprimands and dismissals.
(4) "Plans" or "working drawings" mean any drawings or graphic representations or any combination of drawings or graphic representations, or reproductions thereof, prepared for the purpose of illustrating proposed or intended designs for the construction, enlargement, or alteration of any building or project.
(5) The "practice of architecture" means providing professional services such as consultation, investigation, evaluation, planning, designing (including structural design), or responsible supervision of construction in connection with any building or structure which has as its principal purpose human occupancy or habitation.
(6) "Responsible control" means that amount of control over and detailed knowledge of the content of technical submissions during their preparation as is ordinarily exercised by licensed architects applying the required professional standard of care.
(7) "Supervision" means work prepared under the regular, personal review of a licensed architect's control and as to which the architect has detailed professional knowledge.
(8) "Technical submissions" means designs, drawings, specifications, studies, and other technical reports prepared in the course of executing a portion of a construction project. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1999, No. 52, § 5a; 1999, No. 133 (Adj. Sess.), § 6.)
§ 122. Prohibitions; penalties
(a) No person shall:
(1) practice or attempt to practice architecture or hold himself or herself out as being able to do so in this state without first having obtained the license required by this chapter; or
(2) use in connection with the person's name any letters, words, title, or insignia indicating or implying that the person is an architect unless the person is licensed in accordance with this chapter; or
(3) practice or attempt to practice architecture during license revocation or suspension; or
(4) stamp or seal any documents with their architect's seal if their license to practice architecture has expired or is revoked; or
(5) violate any of the provisions of this chapter.
(b) A person who violates any of the provisions of subsection (a) of this section shall be subject to the penalties provided in 3 V.S.A. § 127(c).
(c) Injunctive relief will be available on application of the office of attorney general or an attorney assigned by the office of professional regulation, pursuant to a complaint filed in the superior court of Washington County to restrain violations of this chapter. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2005, No. 27, § 15; 2007, No. 29, § 16.)
§ 123. Repealed. 1973, No. 118, § 25, eff. Oct. 1, 1973.
§ 124. Construction; exemptions
(a) This chapter shall not be construed to affect or prevent:
(1) the practice of engineering by a professional engineer licensed under the laws of this state;
(2) the preparation of working drawings, details and shop drawings by persons other than architects for use in connection with the execution of their work;
(3) employees of those lawfully practicing as architects under the provisions of this chapter from acting under the instruction, control, or supervision of their employers;
(4) supervision by builders or superintendents employed by such builders, of the construction or structural alteration of buildings or structures;
(5) design and construction, and the provision of services related thereto, of the following if the structure is:
(A) a detached single, two-family, three-family, or four-family dwelling, or a shed, storage building, or garage incidental to that dwelling;
(B) a farm building, including barns, silos, sheds, or housing for farm equipment and machinery, livestock, poultry, or storage; or
(C) a pre-engineered building, or a building, plans for which have been stamped or sealed by a licensed professional in the appropriate field.
(b) The provisions of this section shall not be construed to permit any person not licensed as provided in this chapter to use the title architect, or any title, sign, card, or device to indicate that such person is an architect.
(c) This chapter shall not be construed to limit or restrict in any manner the right of a practitioner of another profession or occupation from carrying on in the usual manner any of the functions incidental to that profession or occupation. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)
Sub-Chapter 2: Vermont Board Of Architects
§ 161. Creation of board; appointment of members; term of office; oath of office
(a) A board of architects is created whose official title shall be "Vermont Board of Architects."
(b) The board shall consist of seven members appointed by the governor as follows: five architects and two public members. All members shall be Vermont residents. The architect members shall have been in active practice in Vermont for not less than three years and shall be in active practice during their incumbency. The public members shall be persons who have no financial interest personally or through a spouse, parent, child, brother, or sister in the activities regulated under this chapter, other than as consumers or possible consumers of its services.
(c) Board members shall be appointed by the governor pursuant to 3 V.S.A. §§ 129b and 2004.
(d) Each member shall file with the director of the office of professional regulation the constitutional oath of office.
(e) Vacancies may be filled in the same manner that initial appointments are made.
(f) No member may be appointed to more than two consecutive terms.
(g) [Deleted.] (Amended 1959, No. 160, § 1; 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 250 (Adj. Sess.), § 4(d); 2005, No. 27, § 16.)
§ 162. Meetings of board; quorum
(a) A majority of the members of the board shall be a quorum for transacting business and all action shall be taken upon a majority vote of the members present and voting.
(b) The provisions of 3 V.S.A. chapter 25 (the Vermont Administrative Procedure Act) relating to contested cases shall apply to proceedings under this chapter.
(c) Fees for the service of process and attendance before the board shall be the same as the fees paid sheriffs and witnesses in superior court. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 2005, No. 27, § 17.)
§ 163. Repealed. 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.
§ 164. Powers and duties of board generally
(a) The board shall:
(1) adopt rules, according to the provisions of 3 V.S.A. chapter 25, the Administrative Procedure Act, which are necessary for the performance of its duties;
(2) provide general information to applicants for licensure as architects;
(3) explain appeal procedures to licensees and applicants and complaint procedures to the public;
(4) adopt rules which define the activities that must be completed by an applicant in order to fulfill the experience requirements established by this chapter. Such activities shall be designed to ensure that all applicants acquire experience in critical areas of architecture but shall not be used to limit or unduly delay admission to practice;
(5) inform applicants of their right to register a complaint with the board and the office of professional regulation if they are unable to obtain the supervision necessary to fulfill the experience requirements of this chapter or the rules adopted under this chapter. The board shall monitor the availability of supervised activities to determine that the experience requirements do not become a barrier to entry into the profession;
(6) if applications for licensure by examination are pending, offer examinations at least once each year and pass upon the qualifications of applicants;
(7) use the administrative and legal services provided by the office of professional regulation under 3 V.S.A. chapter 5.
(b) The board may conduct hearings as provided in 3 V.S.A. chapter 5.
(c)-(f) [Deleted.] (Amended 1983, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 17(2); 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 250 (Adj. Sess.), § 4(d); 2005, No. 148 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.)
§§ 165Repealed. 1997, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 31.
§§ 166-170. Repealed. 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.
Sub-Chapter 3: Licensure
§ 201. Qualifications
(a) To qualify for licensure as an architect in this state, an applicant shall have attained the age of majority and shall have graduated from an approved four-year high school course or must have equivalent training. Additionally, an applicant shall have had:
(1) Satisfactory training in a school or college of architecture approved by the board, with graduation therefrom as evidenced by a diploma setting forth a satisfactory degree in an accredited architectural program, and three years of practical architectural experience under the supervision of a practicing architect or architects who have been licensed for more than three years; or
(2) A total of nine years of diversified practical architectural experience under the supervision of a practicing architect or architects who have been licensed for more than three years. Credits from an accredited postsecondary educational institution may be substituted for up to four years of the experience requirement; or
(3) Training equivalent to that required herein.
(b) An applicant shall pass written examinations under a syllabus selected or prepared by the board, in such technical and professional subjects as may be prescribed by the board. Examinations may be taken before the applicant completes the experience requirements established by this chapter, provided that the applicant has completed all but the final year of required practical experience. Notification of the results of such examinations shall be mailed to each candidate within 30 days of the date the results are received by the board. A candidate failing to pass the examinations may apply for re-examination and may sit for any regularly scheduled examination as many times as the candidate chooses to do so. If an applicant does not pass the entire examination, the applicant shall not be required to retake any section of an examination which the applicant previously passed.
(c) Upon application for licensure, the applicant shall file a report to the board certifying the practical experience requirements completed. The supervisor shall certify that to the best of the supervisor's knowledge, the report is correct.
(d) The board may conduct a personal interview of an applicant. A personal interview shall be for the limited purposes of assisting the applicant to obtain licensure and to verify the applicant's educational qualifications and that the applicant completed the practical architectural experience requirements for licensure. A personal interview shall not serve directly or indirectly as an oral examination of the applicant's substantive knowledge of architecture. An interview conducted under this section shall be taped and, at the request of the applicant, shall be transcribed. An applicant who is denied licensure shall be informed in writing of his or her right to have the interview transcribed free of charge. At least one of the public members of the board shall be present at any personal interview.
(e) When the board intends to deny an application for licensure, the director of the office of professional regulation shall send the applicant written notice of preliminary decision by certified mail, return receipt requested. The notice shall include a specific statement of the reasons for the action. Within 30 days of the date that an applicant receives such notice, the applicant may file a petition with the board for review of its preliminary action. In cases where denial is based upon failure to pass the examination, the applicant may request and shall receive, within 30 days from the date of receipt of the request, further and more specific information on the content of questions which were answered incorrectly, and as to what the correct answers should have been. Such information shall be provided in the manner prescribed by the testing service. At the hearing to review the preliminary decision, which, if the applicant chooses, may not take place until the board has responded to inquiries about the questions and answers, the burden shall be on the applicant to show that licensure should be granted. After the hearing, the board shall affirm or reverse the preliminary denial. The applicant may appeal a final denial by the board to the appeals panel.
(f) The board may establish by rule intern development program training requirements for the purpose of providing a structured transition between formal education and architectural licensure. Completion of the program shall be a condition of eligibility for licensure under this chapter. (Amended 1959, No. 160, § 4; 1969, No. 121, eff. April 22, 1969; 1971, No. 184 (Adj. Sess.), § 11, eff. March 29, 1972; 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 250 (Adj. Sess.), § 4(d); 1997, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 10.)
§ 202. Repealed. 1959, No. 160, § 5.
§ 203. Corporations; limited liability companies
(a) The right to practice architecture is a personal right based on the qualities of the individual and evidenced by a nontransferable license.
(b) A corporation, limited liability company, partnership, association, or individual proprietorship may furnish architectural services provided a member or employee thereof is a licensed architect and is in responsible charge of such services, and provided all plans and specifications are signed and stamped with the personal seal of the licensed architect in responsible charge.
(c) A corporation, limited liability company, partnership, association, or individual proprietorship with which the architect may practice shall be jointly and severally liable with the architect for work performed. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1997, No. 40, § 11.)
§ 204. Licenses generally
The board shall upon payment of the fees prescribed in this chapter, license any applicant who, in the opinion of the board, has satisfactorily met all the requirements of this chapter. Certificates of licensure shall bear a serial number and the full name of the licensee, and shall bear the signatures of the chairperson, the secretary of the board, and the seal of the board. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)
§ 205. Licensure without examination
The board may, upon payment of the required fee, license without examination an applicant who presents evidence that he or she:
(1) is licensed in another state in which the requirements for licensure are essentially equivalent to those required by this chapter; or
(2) holds the certificate of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards. (Amended 1966, No. 48 (Sp. Sess.); 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)
§ 205a. License renewal
(a) Licenses shall be renewed every two years upon application and payment of the required fee. Failure to comply with the provisions of this section shall result in suspension of all privileges granted by the license beginning on the expiration date of the license. A license which has lapsed shall be reinstated upon payment of the biennial renewal fee and the late renewal penalty.
(b) The board may adopt rules necessary for the protection of the public to assure the board that an applicant whose license has lapsed for more than three years is professionally qualified before reinstatement may occur. Conditions imposed under this subsection shall be in addition to the requirements of subsection (a) of this section.
(c) In addition to the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, an applicant for renewal shall have satisfactorily completed continuing education as required by the board. For purposes of this subsection, the board may require, by rule, not more than 24 hours of approved continuing education as a condition of renewal. (Added 1997, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 11; amended 2005, No. 27, § 18.)
§ 206. Display of license
A license shall be displayed in a conspicuous place in the licensee's principal place of business or employment. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)
§ 207. Repealed. 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.
§ 208. Seal
Each licensee shall obtain a seal of such design as the board shall authorize and direct. Plans and specifications prepared by, or under the direct supervision of, a licensed architect shall be stamped with the licensee's seal. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1.)
§ 209. Fees
Applicants and persons regulated under this chapter shall pay the following fees:
(1) Application for license $ 60.00
(2) Initial license issuance $ 20.00
(3) Biennial renewal $155.00
(Amended 1967, No. 105, eff. April 14, 1967; 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 250 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 1999, No. 49, § 170; 2001, No. 143 (Adj. Sess.), § 20, eff. June 21, 2002; 2005, No. 202 (Adj. Sess.), § 10.)
§ 210. Unprofessional conduct
Unprofessional conduct means the following conduct and the conduct set forth in 3 V.S.A. § 129a:
(1) assisting the application for licensure of a person known by the licensee to be unqualified in respect to education, training or experience;
(2) accepting compensation for services from more than one party on a project unless the circumstances are fully disclosed and agreed to by all interested parties;
(3) failing to disclose fully in writing to a client or employer the nature of any business association or direct or indirect financial interest substantial enough to influence the licensee's judgment in the performance of professional services;
(4) soliciting or accepting compensation from material or equipment suppliers in return for specifying or endorsing their products;
(5) rendering decisions favoring either party to a contract when acting as interpreter of building contract documents and judge of contract performance;
(6) failing to disclose compensation for making public statements on architectural questions;
(7) offering or making any payment or gift to an elected or appointed government official with the intent to influence the official's judgment in connection with a prospective or existing project in which the licensee is interested;
(8) offering or making any gifts of other than nominal value, including reasonable entertainment and hospitality, with the intent to influence the judgment of an existing or prospective client in connection with a project in which the licensee is interested;
(9) practicing or offering to practice beyond the scope permitted by law;
(10) knowingly designing a project in violation of applicable state and local building laws and regulations;
(11) accepting and performing responsibilities which the licensee knows or has reason to know that he or she is not competent to perform or undertaking to perform professional services in specific technical areas in which the licensee is not qualified by education, training and experience;
(12) failing to practice with reasonable care and competence and to apply the technical knowledge and skill ordinarily applied by licensees practicing in the same locality;
(13) making any willful material misrepresentation with respect to the qualifications of or experience of an applicant or otherwise in the practice of the profession, whether by commission or omission;
(14) agreeing with any other person, as defined in 1 V.S.A. § 128, or subscribing to any code of ethics or organizational bylaws, when the intent or primary effect of that agreement, code, or bylaw is to restrict or limit the flow of information concerning alleged or suspected unprofessional conduct to the board;
(15) failing to report to the board knowledge of a violation of these rules by another licensee;
(16) failing to report to the public official charged with enforcement of applicable state or municipal building laws and regulations any decision taken by the licensee's employer or client, against the licensee's advice, which violates applicable state or municipal building laws and regulations and which will, in the licensee's judgment, materially affect adversely safety to the public or the finished project;
(17) acting, while serving as a board member, in any way to contravene willfully the provisions of this chapter and thereby artificially restricting the entry of qualified persons into the profession;
(18) using the licensee's seal on drawings prepared by others not in the licensee's direct employ, or using the seal of another;
(19) inaccurately representing to a prospective or existing client or employer the licensee's qualifications and scope of responsibility for work for which the licensee claims credit;
(20) signing or sealing technical submissions unless they were prepared by or under the responsible control of the licensee; except that (A) the licensee may sign or seal those portions of the technical submissions that were prepared by or under the responsible control of persons who are licensed under this chapter if the licensee has reviewed and adopted in whole or in part such portions and has either coordinated their preparation or integrated them into his or her work, and (B) the licensee may sign or seal those portions of the technical submissions that are not required by this section to be prepared by or under the responsible control of a licensee if the licensee has reviewed and adopted in whole or in part such submissions and integrated them into his or her work. Reviewing, or reviewing and correcting, technical submissions after they have been prepared by others does not constitute the exercise of responsible control because the reviewer has neither control over nor detailed knowledge of the content of such submissions throughout their preparation. Any licensee signing and sealing technical submissions not prepared by that licensee but prepared under the licensee's responsible control by persons not regularly employed in the office where the licensee is resident shall maintain and make available to the board upon request, for at least five years following such signing and sealing, adequate and complete records demonstrating the nature and extent of the licensee's control over and detailed knowledge of such technical submissions throughout their preparation;
(21) in each office maintained for preparation of drawings, specifications, reports, or other professional work, failing to have a licensee with direct knowledge and supervisory control of such work resident and regularly employed in that office. (Amended 1985, No. 248 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1997, No. 145 (Adj. Sess.), § 33; 1999, No. 52, § 5b.)
§§ 211Repealed. 2005, No. 148 (Adj. Sess.), § 54.
§ 212. Repealed. 1989, No. 250 (Adj. Sess.), § 92.