Building Design Limitations

Architects

May design any building of any type except:

  • structural portion of a hospital

Business & Professions Code Section 129805 of Health & Safety Code Section 5500.1 and 6737

Civil Engineers

May design any building of any type except:

  • Hospitals
  • Schools

Health & Safety Code Section 129805, Education Code Section 17302, Business & Professions Code Sections 5537.5, 6731, and 6735

Structural Engineers

May design any building of any type:

  • no limitations

Business & Professions Code Sections 5537.1, 6731, and 6736

Unlicensed Persons

May design the following:

  • Single-family dwellings of woodframe construction not more than two stories and basement in height.
  • Multiple dwellings containing not more than four dwelling units of woodframe construction not more than two stories and basement in height. No more than four dwelling units per lot.
  • Garages or other structures appurtenant to single-family dwelling, of woodframe construction not more than two stories and basement in height.
  • Agricultural and ranch buildings of woodframe construction, unless the building official having jurisdiction deems that an undue risk to the public health, safety, or welfare is involved.
  • Nonstructural or nonseismic storefronts, interior alterations or additions, fixtures, cabinetwork, furniture, or other appliances or equipment, including nonstructural or nonseismic work necessary to provide for their installation.

May not design:

  • Any component that changes or affects the safety of any building, including but not limited to structural or seismic components.

Note: Building officials may require plans, computations, and specifications to be prepared and designed by an engineer or architect licensed by the state to practice as such even if not required by state law.Business and Professions Code Sections 5537, 5538, and 6737.1