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Frequently Asked Questions: Elevator Licensing

Questions most often asked about elevator contractor and elevator mechanic licensing:


General questions about licensing elevator professionals

  • In general, who must be licensed to work on elevators or other conveyances?
    Any person, firm or company that solicits elevator or other conveyance work from paying customers must be a licensed elevator contractor. In addition, any person wishing to work on conveyances must be a licensed elevator mechanic employed by a licensed elevator contractor.
  • Is a license required for work on conveyances other than elevators?
    A license is required for most work on escalators, dumbwaiters, stairlifts, wheelchair lifts, casket lifts, residential inclined elevators, boat launch lifts, special purpose elevators, belt manlifts, hand-powered manlifts, electric manlifts, material lifts, grain elevators and any other conveyance. Exceptions include some types of work on residential conveyances and some types of electrical work that do not involve working in, under, or on top of the elevator car.
  • Do homeowners have to be licensed to work on their conveyance?
    A homeowner may do maintenance on his/her conveyance without being licensed. However, homeowners may not install, alter or do any work that would require a permit on their conveyance. Maintenance work is lubrication, tightening fastenings, etc. Work that requires permits would include items such as changes to life safety or fire safety items.
  • Do “helpers” have to be licensed?
    An individual who is working in the capacity of a helper or apprentice under the general direction of a licensed elevator mechanic does not have to be licensed.
  • What does “under the general direction” mean?
    The law defines “general direction” for two separate instances:
    • General direction — Installation and alteration work” means the necessary education, assistance, and supervision is provided by a licensed elevator mechanic (in the appropriate category) who is on the same job site as the helper/apprentice at least 75 percent of each working day. The ratio of helper to mechanic must be one-to-one.
    • General direction — Maintenance work” means the necessary education, assistance, and supervision is provided by a licensed elevator mechanic (in the appropriate category) to ensure that the maintenance work is performed safely and to code.
  • Do I need a license to perform work on conveyances in the City of Seattle and the City of Spokane?
    Yes. Although the City of Seattle and the City of Spokane have their own jurisdictional authorities for permits on elevators and other conveyances, a license is required for anyone who performs work on conveyances in the state of Washington.
  • Can I get an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license at the City of Spokane or the City of Seattle?
    No. Only the Department of Labor & Industries can issue these licenses.
  • Can L&I suspend or revoke my license?
    L&I may deny application of or suspend a license under this section if the applicant owes outstanding final judgments to L&I or (as required by state law) if L&I has been notified that the applicant or license holder owes overdue state-ordered child support payments.
  • Are there penalties for working without a license?
    Yes. Any person, firm or company working without a license may be cited for a violation under RCW 70.87 and WAC 296-96 may be assessed a civil penalty in the amount of $500. Each day a person, firm or company is in violation may be considered a separate violation. Each job site at which a person is in violation may be considered a separate violation. (WAC 296-96-00926) Laws, known as the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) and regulations that specify how the laws are implemented, known as the Washington Administrative Code (WAC), can be found on the Web at http://slc.leg.wa.gov/.
  • I hold an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license in another state. Does the State of Washington have any reciprocal agreements with any other state?
    Washington does not have any reciprocal agreements with any other states as of July 1, 2004. Check with the Department of Labor & Industries for current status of agreements.
  • What is the cost of an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license?
    The cost for each of these licenses is $150.00. This fee includes the $50 application fee and the $100 license fee.
  • How can I pay for my license?
    Payment may be made by personal check, money order, cashier’s check, or with a debit/credit card at any of the Department of Labor & Industries regional field offices, or with a debit/credit card through the Get or Renew a License (QuickCards) system on the Department of Labor & Industries elevator website.
  • What will be the fee if I must take an exam to qualify for an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license?
    If you must take an exam to qualify for the elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license, there will be an examination fee of $150. This fee is addition to the application fee of $150. An elevator contractor who must take a test in order to qualify for a license must designate a primary point of contact to take the exam on the contractor’s behalf.
  • What are the renewal fees for an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license?
    • The fee for timely renewal of a license is $100.00. Renewals will be considered "timely" when the renewal application and fee is received on or prior to the expiration date of the license.
    • The fee for a late renewal of a license is $200.00. Late renewal is for renewal applications received no later than ninety days after the expiration of the licenses.
    • If the application and the fee are not received within 90 days from license expiration, the licensee must reapply and pass the competency examination. (If it is necessary to take the exam, the examination fee is in addition to the late renewal license fee.)
  • If I misplace my license, what is the fee to replace an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license?
    The fee to replace a license is $15.00.
  • If I apply for a license and then change my mind, will my money be refunded?
    The examination fee of $150 and the application fee of $50 are non-refundable. The full license fee of $100 will be refunded if the license is denied by L&I. A $30 processing fee will be deducted from all refunds requested by the applicant. All requests regarding refunds must be made in writing to:

    Department of Labor & Industries
    Elevator Section
    P.O. Box 44480
    Olympia, WA 98504-4480

  • Where can I get more information about how to get an elevator mechanic or elevator contractor license?
    You can go to our Licensing Elevator Professionals web pages to find information, instructions, and application forms or you may apply at any regional or local Labor & Industries office. You may pay your licensing fee online, but you will still need to fill out the application and mail it in.

Contractor licensing questions

  • How can I become licensed as an elevator contractor?
    Take me to the elevator contractor licensing page.
  • How long is an elevator contractor license valid?
    A certificate and a license card will be issued when all application criteria have been met. For elevator contractors, the initial license will be valid for two years and must be renewed with an application available from L&I.
  • What type of supporting documentation will Labor & Industries require prove my education and experience in working as a mechanic on conveyances?
    If you are applying for an elevator contractor license, you must supply documentation that you have performed conveyance work as verified by current and previous elevator contractors licensed to do business.
  • What is the “primary point of contact” for an elevator contractor and who can be designated as one?
    An elevator contractor who must take a test in order to qualify for a license must designate a primary point of contact to take the exam on the contractor’s behalf. The contractor or any individual employed by the contractor may be designated as the primary point of contact.
  • What must be done if the primary point of contact leaves the company?
    If the primary point of contact identified by a firm or company separates employment for any reason, that person’s designation as the primary point of contact ends and the elevator contractor must, within 90 days, designate a new individual and inform L&I of the change. If this is not done, the elevator contractor license will be automatically suspended.
  • If I must take an exam as the primary point of contact for the elevator contractor license, what will the exam cover?
    The examination will be an open book examination and will consist of approximately 100 to 150 multiple-choice questions. A score of at least 80 percent is required to pass.
  • What else do I need to know about the exam and how to prepare for it?
    • Examinations shall be held at locations and times when considered necessary by L&I. L&I will notify qualified applicants of the date, time, and location of the examination.
    • Applicants may prepare for the exam by studying The Revised Code of Washington, Chapters 70.87,18.27, and 49.17 and the Washington Administrative Code, sections 296-96 and 296-200A.
    • Applicants should also bring these materials with them to the examination. L&I will not supply reference materials for the exam.
    • Information about elevator laws and regulations may be found on the L&I website at http://www.lni.wa.gov/TradesLicensing/Rules/ByTrade/Elevator

Mechanic licensing questions

  • How can I become licensed as an elevator mechanic?
    Until Oct. 1, 2004, there are four ways to become licensed as an elevator mechanic. Take me to the elevator mechanic licensing Web page.
  • May I apply for more than one category of elevator mechanic license?
    You may apply for as many different categories as you wish, provided that you send a separate application and fee for each category. Please go to Elevator Mechanic Licensing Web page for the list of categories.
  • How long is an elevator mechanic license valid?
    A certificate and a license card will be issued when all application criteria have been met. The initial elevator mechanic’s license will be valid for approximately two years, depending on the applicant’s birthdate, and must be renewed with an application available from L&I. Renewed licenses will be valid for exactly two years.
  • If I must take an exam for the elevator mechanic license, what will the exam cover?
    The examination will be an open book examination and will consist of approximately 100 to 150 multiple-choice questions. A score of at least 80% is required to pass.
  • Where can I get exam study information?
    Applicants may prepare for the exam by studying the ASME A17.1-2000, A17.1A 2002, A17.1B 2003 Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators; ASME A18.1-1999 and ASME A18.1a-2001 addenda, Safety Standard for Platform Lifts and Stairway Chairlifts; the Revised Code of Washington chapter 70.87; the Washington Administrative Code section 296-96; National Electrical Code 2003; International Building Code 2003; Elevator Industry Field Employees’ Safety Handbook; The Installation Manual and the Elevator Maintenance Manual.

    Applicants should also bring these materials with them to the examination. L&I will not supply reference materials for the exam.
    • The Revised Code of Washington chapter 70.87; the Washington Administrative Code section 296-96 on our website: www.lni.wa.gov/TradesLicensing/elevators.
    • ASME A17.1-2000, A17.1A 2002, A17.1B 2003 Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators; ASME A18.1-1999 and ASME A18.1a-2001 addenda, Safety Standard for Platform Lifts and Stairway Chairlifts-- American Society of Mechanical Engineers: www.asme.org.
    • International Building Code 2003-- International Code Council, Inc: 1-800-214-43212.
    • National Electrical Code 2003--National Fire Protection Association, Inc.: www.nfpacatalog.org or 1-800-344-3555.
    • Elevator Industry Field Employees’ Safety Handbook; The Installation Manual and the Elevator Maintenance Manual : Elevator World: www.elevator-world.com or 1-800-730-5093.
  • What type of supporting documentation will Labor & Industries require prove my education and experience in working as a mechanic on conveyances?
    • If you are applying for an elevator mechanic license and have obtained a certificate of completion and successfully passed the mechanic examination of a nationally recognized training program for the elevator industry, you must attach a copy of the certificate with your application.
    • If you are applying for an elevator mechanic license and have not completed a nationally recognized training program for the elevator industry, you should provide time tickets, documentation of safety classes and any other documents that you feel would help L&I determine your eligibility for a license.
  • How do I become licensed as a temporary elevator mechanic?
    This license is limited to individuals that are certified as qualified and competent by licensed elevator contractors. The individual must be an employee of the licensed elevator contractor. The contractor must furnish acceptable proof of competency as needed by L&I. Each license is valid for a period of 30 days from the date of issuance and for such particular elevators or geographical areas as designated on the application. Fee payment for this license may be made online. You must print out the application and t he entire application must be completed, signed, and submitted to L&I with a $50 fee for processing.
  • Can a temporary elevator mechanic license be renewed?
    A temporary elevator mechanic license may be renewed at the discretion of L&I.
  • What is the renewal fee for a temporary elevator mechanic license?
    The renewal fee for this license is $50.

 


Exemptions from licensing requirements

  • What elevator or conveyance work is exempt from licensing requirements?

    • Elevator mechanic licenses are not required for individuals who install signal systems, fans, electric light fixtures, illuminated thresholds and feed wires to the terminals on the elevator main line control provided that the individual does not require access to the pit, hoistway, or top of the car for installation of these items.
    • Elevator mechanic licenses may not be required for certain types of incidental work that is performed on conveyances when the appropriate lockout and tagout procedures have been performed by a licensed elevator mechanic in the appropriate category. L&I must be notified and must approve the scope of work prior to the work being performed.
  • Are public agencies and their employees required to be licensed to perform elevator work?
    Public agencies are not required to be licensed elevator contractors. However, their employees must be licensed elevator mechanics in order to perform maintenance work on conveyances. Employees of public agencies should maintain a minimum of a Category 8 license to perform this work. Employees of public agencies cannot perform alterations, installations or other work on conveyances. This work can only be performed by licensed elevator mechanics who are employed by licensed elevator contractors.
  • What is the definition of a public agency?
    For the purposes of determining whether you work for a public agency when pursuing a Category 8 elevator mechanic license, use the following definition: Public agency is defined as a county, incorporated city or town, municipal corporation, state agency, institution of higher education, political subdivision, or other public agency and includes any department, bureau, office, board, commission or institution of such public entities.
  • Are facilities in which agricultural products are stored, food products are processed, goods are manufactured, energy is generated, or similar industrial or agricultural processes are performed exempt from licensing requirements?
    Employees who are regularly employed by the owner of these types of facilities may perform maintenance only on conveyances that are located in the facility in which these processes are performed. These employees are not required to possess an elevator mechanic license. The conveyance must be a conveyance other than a passenger elevator to which the general public has access. Employers are not required to be licensed elevator contractors in order for their employees to perform this work.
  • I am an electrician and I do not work for an elevator company. What kind of work can I perform on an elevator?
    Elevator mechanic licenses are not required for individuals who install signal systems, fans, electric light fixtures, illuminated thresholds and feed wires to the terminals on the elevator main line control provided that the individual does not require access to the pit, hoistway, or top of the car for installation of these items.
  • Elevator mechanic licenses may not be required for certain types of incidental work that is performed on conveyances when the appropriate lockout and tagout procedures have been performed by a licensed elevator mechanic in the appropriate category. L&I must be notified and must approve the scope of work prior to the work being performed. Examples of this work might include installation of pit lights, waterproofing of pits, smoke detectors in the hoistway, etc.

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