Why Verifying your Electrician’s License is Important

Hiring a licensed electrician for various electrical work around your house is always encouraged. However, it also pays to be meticulous on an electrician’s license – as it would give you an idea regarding their field of expertise and their work experience on the field.

Working with your home’s electrical system isn’t always safe. There’s always the possibility of danger with any electrical project hence it’s always advised to seek a good electrician before getting any work done. Faulty electrical works can start a fire, and your insurance may not be enough to cover all the damages caused by unlicensed electrical work. Unless you’d want to risk a bit of your fortune, always pay attention to your electrician’s license.

Is a license important?

Not everyone can easily tinker around with the electrical wires and systems they have at home and expect the issue to be resolved at the end of the day. Electrical work may vary in the degree of their complexity, hence it’s best to consult electrician services for a proper assessment.
There’s also risk involved in any electrical work, which good electrician in Singapore are trained to safely deal with. Before one is given a valid electrician license, they should first undergo rigorous training. This includes four to five years of formal education which is common in Singapore, where aspiring electricians take up electrical engineering. They also take extensive on-the-job training and has a long apprenticeship period.

During their formal training, they are taught how to safely work with various electrical systems and be informed of local codes and statures. Building codes may vary by community. An electrician must know any code requirements for your area, and if the severity of the issue requires you to apply for a permit before any work can be done.

Required by the law

Any electrical work must be undertaken by a rightfully licensed electrician. This includes new wiring, rewiring, or adding extensions which must be tested prior to turning the supply on.

A license also entitles the holder to carry out advanced electrical work such as design, operate, maintain, inspect, or test an electrical supply installation. The specific operating voltage of the installation must not exceed 1000 volts and the approved load of such installation must also not exceed 45 kVA.
The license also allows the electrician to carry out any electrical work as instructed by an authorized high voltage switching engineer, or under his/her supervision.

It is considered an offense if a person:

    a: carries out or caused to carry out any electrical work without a valid electrical worker license; or

    b: knowingly engages another person who isn’t a licensed electrical worker to carry out electrical work

If you need any electrical work done at your premises (residence or on buildings you own), check if the electrician has a valid Electrical Worker license duly issued by the authority.

Individual or contractor?

Licenses for electrician services are made available either for individuals or contractors. Therefore, it’s urged to check whether the electrician license is for individual practice or contractor. Individually practicing electricians generally work on their own. They are the ones who study local codes and other regulations themselves. Accordingly, they work as they deem fit.

For contractors, any work done by employees must be verified to meet all code and safety requirements. Electricians who are employed by contactors are often obliged to attend seminars, forums, and other meetings regularly.

Whenever presented with a license, take it upon yourself to verify that the person’s name matches the name of the license. If the license is contractual, verify if the electrician is truly employed by the licensed company. You can do so by giving the company hotline a call and ask if the electrician is currently working for the company.

Verifying a license

In Singapore, there are various information you can use to verify an electrician’s license. First, you can use the number that appears on the license. If the license number appears to be too long or too short, it is urged to get it checked with Energy Market Authority (EMA). Any suspicious electrician license must be dealt with accordingly.

Next, you can also get information through the electrician’s full name. Does he have a clean track record? Are there any failures/major issues regarding his electrician services in the past? Does he have a history with dissatisfied customers? Knowing an electrician’s professional work history will give you an idea how your experience will unfold as you work along with them.

Another way to verify a license is to ask for verification from one’s company. If your electrician is employed by a company, you can always ask for relevant details from their employer. For one, you can ask about their related work experiences and if they have worked with issues similar with your case before.

The Energy Market Authority (EMA) can also verify if an electrician is licensed to work in your area. Keep in mind that faking an electrician license is illegal, however, there are still cases where unlicensed electricians claim they have one. If your electrician’s license isn’t verified in EMA’s database, then it’s encouraged to look for other potential electricians to work with you.

You can also opt to ask for proof of liability insurance. Generally, electricians offer insurance if something goes wrong with their electrical works. If they work with an electrical firm, the company itself offers the insurance for their services. Inquire with the respective insurance company to verify their license.

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