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| Friday, 24 March 2017 |

Practice Prohibitions

Improved Public Interest

To protect the public, it is important that a Member or Permit Holder whose licence or permit has been suspended or cancelled for discipline or practice review reasons not be able to practise or associate in the practise of engineering or geoscience except as may otherwise be provided in a discipline or practice review order.

Background

  • Under the current Engineering and Geoscience Professions Act (EGP Act):
    • a Member or Permit Holder whose licence or permit is cancelled or suspended, for any reason, must not engage in the practice of engineering or geoscience, or directly or indirectly associate in the practice of engineering or geoscience with any other Member or Permit Holder, without the consent of Council.
    • no Member or Permit Holder can employ or directly or indirectly associate in the practice of engineering or geoscience with a Member or Permit Holder whose licence or permit has been cancelled or suspended, except with the consent of Council.
    • Council may permit a Member or Permit Holder to employ a Member or Permit Holder whose licence or permit has been cancelled or suspended, subject to terms and conditions prescribed by Council.

Why is this important?

  • Under the EGP Act, these practice prohibitions apply to Members and Permit Holders whose licences or permits have been cancelled for any reason, including administrative reasons such as a voluntary cancellation.
  • The legislation should be amended to clarify that practice prohibitions should only apply to Members and Permit Holders whose licences or permits have been suspended or cancelled because of disciplinary or practice review proceedings.
  • For example, Members who voluntarily cancel their licences because they will be out of the workforce for an extended period (e.g., caregivers, change of careers, extended travel) and then want to be reinstated should be allowed to work under the supervision and control of a licensed professional to refresh their skills and competency without needing to first apply to Council for permission and without the prospective employers needing to apply to Council for permission to employ the former Members.
  • It is in the public interest that Members and Permit Holders whose licences or permits have been suspended or cancelled for disciplinary or practice review reasons should not be able to circumvent that suspension or cancellation by simply working under the supervision and control of a licensed professional, unless a discipline or practice review order states otherwise.

Proposed legislative change

  • It is recommended that the EGP Act be amended to clarify that the existing practice prohibition sections only apply to Members and Permit Holders whose licences or permits have been suspended or cancelled because of disciplinary or practice review proceedings.

Example of relevant existing legislation

Chartered Professional Accountants Act, Alberta

Restriction on practice associations
Section 4(1) Unless the complaints inquiry committee or a discipline tribunal otherwise permits, no registrant may associate or engage in a professional accounting practice or a public accounting practice with

(a) a person whose registration under this Act is suspended, or

(b) a former registrant whose registration was cancelled because of disciplinary proceedings conducted

(i) under this Act or a former Act, or

(ii) under legislation governing any organization outside Alberta that regulates accounting and that is recognized by the board in accordance with the directives.

4(2) Permission under subsection (1) may be made subject to terms, conditions and restrictions set by the complaints inquiry committee or discipline tribunal.