Alabama Board of Engineers and Land Surveyors

Frequently Asked Questions

General Information

Monday through Friday, 7:30 - 4:30 CST

You can change your address through the website under Change of Address

For applications and exam fees, no. We only accept checks or money orders.

We accept credit cards when renewing your license on-line.

Applications

If your application has to be reviewed by the Board, it will be processed for the next board meeting.

You can check your status on the website under Applicants and then under the appropriate link.

Comity Applicants Only (we are not accepting NCEES Record for Initial Licensure) - You need to complete only questions 1-15, 20, 22-23 of the application, submit with a $125 check and proof of citizenship.

Our law requires that experience be verified by PE's or by a graduate engineer the board can review to determine if they are substantially equivalent. If the individuals who completed the experience verification form that are contained in your NCEES Record were not PE's, you may be requested to send additional verification of your experience on Alabama's experience verification form if there is a deficiency in the experience requirement.

Yes, if you meet Alabama's requirements such as education, work experience, you have passed the NCEES FE & PE exams and you have a United States Social Security Number.

No. We must have the form with the original signature and the check.

No for the ALSS exam. FE, FS, PE, PS and SE exams - if you register with NCEES as an Alabama candidate, you will be required to come to Alabama to take the exam.

We have board meetings approximately every 2 months. Once an application is complete and if there are no anomalies or felonies, a license will be issued in approximately 3-4 weeks. If there are issues with the application, the application will be reviewed at the next board meeting provided everything is in by the deadline.

Certificate of Authorizations

If your corporation, LLC or LLP offers to perform or performs engineering and/or land surveying work, you will be required to have a CA.

If you practice under your name (i.e. John Doe, PE), you do not need a CA. If you practice as John Doe Engineering, you will need a CA.

Complete the CA application with the amended block checked and submit to the board office within 30 days of the change. There is no charge to amend your CA.

Complete the CA application with the amended block checked and submit to the board office within 30 days of the office being opened. There is no charge to amend your CA.

Complete the CA application with the amended block checked and submit to the board office within 30 days of the change. There is no charge to amend your CA. You will also need to contact the Secretary of State's office to change your company name.

Complaints & Enforcement

Complete and submit the complaint form on the website. The complaint form can be typed in the PDF format.

The Board does not have the authority to settle boundary line disputes. You must go through your local court system for a resolution.

Check the website under License Search. For more detail on the enforcement action taken (if any) e-mail Bob Herbert or call (334) 242-5089.

A letter is sent to the complainant and the subject of the complaint notifying both that a complaint has been received. The subject is allowed approximately 21 days to respond to the complaint. If a site visit is required, one will be made. If the complaint concerns technical issues, the complaint is forwarded to an outside technical advisor. If the technical advisor provides comments, the subject of the complaint is allowed to respond to the comments. A report is then generated on the facts and responses and forwarded to the investigative committee for its recommendations and then presented to the board at a board meeting. The decision of the board at a board meeting. The decision of the board could take up to 30 days from the date of the board meeting your case was presented at.

Education

No for engineering. We would accept a BS in Geomatics/Surveying from Great Basin College or the University of Maine.

Yes, unless you were originally licensed as a PE in another state prior to December 31, 1992 and you are currently licensed in some state and can have at least 8 years of experience prior to December 31, 1992 verified by PE's or you were originally licensed as a PLS in another state prior to December 31, 2005, and you are currently licensed in some state and you can have at least 8 years of experience prior to December 31, 2005 verified by license land surveyors.

Yes. We cannot accept a transcript from the applicant nor do we accept electronic transcripts.

Yes. Your foreign degree will need to be evaluated by NCEES

Yes. The Board requires that your education be evaluated by National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES). Please contact NCEES at www.ncees.org to request an education evaluation packet. There is no waiver to this requirement.

Initial Applicants - Our law changed December 31, 2005. We no longer accept engineering technology or related science degrees unless an ABET accredited MS or PhD in engineering has been received in addition to your BS.

Comity Applicants - If you were originally licensed in another state as a PE prior to December 31, 2005, and you can have at least 8 years of experience prior to December 31, 2005, verified by PE's and you are currently licensed, you can file an application.

Exams

Since NCEES administers the exam for us, you need to contact NCEES at (877) 536-7729 or www.ncees.org.

ALLS Exam - there are no exceptions. Our law does not provide for either.
PE & PLS Exams - you must contact NCEES about their refund policy.

You will be notified that you application is closed and you will be required to file another application and meet the requirements at the time of reapplication.

No. It only counts if you show up and fail.

No. Our law has no provisions to waive either exam.

Yes. NCEES charges to regrade an exam. You must contact NCEES for the regrade within 30 day of your exam results. NCEES will take the scoring template and place it over your answer sheet to ensure the computer scored your exam correctly. There has never been a change in exam scores based on this regrade method.

NCEES and the Alabama Board reserves the right to repeat questions, and the integrity of the questions is compromised by overexposure. If some examinees are allowed to review questions, it may give them an unfair advantage over other examinees.

Go the NCEES' website - www.ncees.org under "Exams" to answer questions concerning scoring of the exams.

No. We only release the results as pass or fail.

NCEES will notify you by email approximately 21 days prior to the exam that you can download your admission notice from your NCEES account. If you are taking the ALLS exam in Montgomery, the admission cards are mailed approximately 10 days prior to the exam.

NCEES has study material for the FE, PE, FS, and PS exams on their website. The Alabama History & Law study material can be found on our website under Applicants then LS Forms.

If you took the exam in April, approximately June 15. If you took the exam in October, approximately December 15. The ALSS exam results are usually mailed within a week of the exam.

NCEES has available on the website all the exam content information for the FE, PE, FS, and PS exams. For the ALSS Exam, go to the website under Applications, then under LS Forms then under ALSS Study Material.

Yes for PE and SE. If you register with NCEES as an Alabama candidate, you must come to Alabama to take the exam. The ALSS exam is a computer based exam.

No for PE and SE. If you register with NCEES as an Alabama candidate, you must come to Alabama to take the exam. The ALSS exam is a computer based exam.

No. If you had Veteran's Preference Points added to your exam score to give you a passing grade, we cannot accept that exam. Georgia adds Veteran's Preference Points to scores. If you are a veteran and took the exam(s) in Georgia, you may need to check with the Georgia Board to see if Veteran's Preference Points were added to your score.

Is it 21 days prior to the exam? NCEES notifies you by email 21 days prior to the exam to download your admission notice from your NCEES account. Contact NCEES at (877) 536-7729 if you have not received an email. You can also log back into your NCEES Account to see if the admission card is available to be downloaded.

When you register with NCEES, there is an option for Special Accommodations. If you need more information, you would need to contact NCEES directly.

Experience

Only if it was received in a formal co-op program through the school or if it took you 6 years or longer to receive your BS degree and you were working gaining engineering experience if applying for engineering or land surveying experience if applying for land surveying. Either way, the experience must be verified by a PE if for an engineering application or by a PLS if for a land surveying application. You will receive no more than 6 months credit.

Yes, only if that is all you were doing. You would not get credit for working full time and then doing part time work on the side. You would receive approximately less than half credit for the experience and it would need to be verified by a PE for engineering work and LS for land surveying work.

Engineering Experience - If your supervisor is not a PE but is a graduate engineer, you can have them complete a Background Information Form on the website (under Applicants then under PE Forms) as well as the Experience Verification form. The board would review to determine that when you were working together if this person would have sent in an application to become licensed would they license them. If so, you would get credit for the experience. If not, then you would not.

Land Surveying Experience - If your supervisor is not a PLS but is a graduate land surveyor, you can have them complete a Background Information Form on the website (under Applicants then under LS Forms) as well as the Experience Verification form. The board would review to determine that when you were working together if this person would have sent in an application to become licensed would they have licensed them. If so, you would get credit for the experience. If not, then you would not.

If your supervisor dies before you make application, you can get another licensed individual in the company to verify your experience. If there is no one inside the company that is licensed or a graduate engineer if engineering experience or graduate land surveyor if land surveying experience that can be reviewed as substantially equivalent, you can get a licensed individual outside the company who is knowledgeable of your experience. You would also be required to specify how this person has knowledge and how often they have reviewed your work.

Renewals/Continuing Education

Yes if your license is in current status. That is the only method for renewing your license. There is a link on our home page or under Licensees then under License Renewal. There is no additional fee to renew on-line.

No. It is the licensee's responsibility to determine if the course meets the requirements.

No. The courses must be completed when the renewal is submitted.

Only if you are no longer practicing engineering or land surveying (inactive).

A few exceptions would be: if you are non-career military on active duty for more than 120 consecutive days, overseas job assignment for more than 120 consecutive days or during the past year you had a serious illness or injury that prevents you from obtaining your PDH's.

No. You must have completed the 30 PDH's when you renew.

Renewal reminders are normally mailed out in mid to late October. No paper renewal forms will be available, you are required to renew online.

Due to cost-cutting measures, the board decided to no longer provide a pocket card. When you renew online, a receipt showing your license status, date paid, when the license expires and your continuing education carry forward hours can be printed during the renewal process. A simulated pocket card can also be printed.

If you wait until after December 31 to send in your renewal form, you will have to pay a $250 late fee in addition to the $100 renewal fee.

No. After December 31, your license is expired and you cannot practice until you renew your license. If you practice on a expired license, you are subject to enforcement action being taken against you.

If you are lapsed, you must apply for reinstatement. The reinstatement form is available on the website under Licensees then under Reinstatement. You will be required to earn the PDH's to get your license reinstated up to the current year and then earn the PDH's to get you renewed for the current year. There is also a reinstatement fee. The hours and fee would depend on how long your license has been lapsed. You would be required to provide documentation of your continuing education.

If you are expired, you are not eligible to reinstate and you must make application for licensure again. That would involve the verification of exams, transcripts, verifications and references. You must meet the requirements of the law at the time of reapplication.

Yes if you are in an inactive status. Being inactive only exempts you from the continuing education.

Inactive - a person who is not engaged in the engineering or land surveying practice which requires licensure in Alabama.

A maximum of 15 PDH hours can be carried from the one year into the next renewal cycle.

For meeting the continuing professional competency requirements through correspondence, video, audio or online courses, the course must require the participant to show evidence of completion.

Self-study courses are not accepted.

Your license will be placed in a lapsed status for 2 years. If you do not reinstate your license within 2 years, it is then expired and you must go through the application process in order to be licensed again.

No. If you are audited, you would be required to send proof at that time.

If you are reinstating your license, you will be required to send proof with your reinstatement form of the continuing education courses you attended.

No. You can attend company-sponsored courses, engineering or land surveying society meetings, seminars, etc.

In the event you elect to return to an active status, you would be required to earn the PDH's for each year your license was in inactive status not to exceed the annual requirement for 2 years. You would also have to obtain the required 30 PDH to renew the license in active status for the next renewal year.

Sealing of Documents & Stamps

Most local office supply companies provide this service.

The stamp needs to be circular in form and not less than 1 & 5/8 inches nor greater than 2 inches in diameter.

It is not necessary to have the E or S after your number as long at the stamp reads Professional Engineer or Professional Land Surveyor.

Sample Seal

You may, as long as you put an original signature and date on your documents.

You may, as long as it meets the criteria established by the Board. See Administrative Code 330-X-2-(10)(b) for the criteria.

QBS

A process to procure engineering or land surveying services that first determines the qualifications of the engineer or land surveyor prior to entering into fee negotiations.

The basics of QBS are: (1) An engineer or land surveyor submits a statement of qualification and performance data; (2) a determination is made as to the individuals or firms that meet the qualifications for the project (3), the Client and first qualified individual or firm enter into fee negotiations, (4) if no agreement can be reached, the Client moves on to the second qualified firm to begin fee negotiations and the first firm is disqualified.

Yes. QBS is required for both private and public work.

No. Simultaneous negotiations or solicitation of fee proposals by the client from two or more engineers constitutes “bidding” and participation by a licensee is prohibited.

Yes and No.

QBS does not apply to boundary surveys on private land where the survey is not intended for use as a basis for engineering design at the time of preparation.

QBS is required for surveys that are prepared in accordance with the standards specified by the American Land Title Association (ALTA) and the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS).

No. You cannot be reconsidered unless the client disqualifies all individuals or firms and begins a new QBS process.

Yes. The Commissioning of Engineering Works is defined as the practice of engineering.