The A - Z of a California PE Stamp

PE Stamp

On August 8, 1907, the first professional engineering license was issued to Charles Bellamy in Wyoming.

Previously, when Clarence Johnson became a Wyoming state engineer in 1903, he found that professionals without engineering training were making poor-quality submissions to the state.

Consequently, in 1907, Johnson presented a bill that required registration for anyone presenting themselves as an engineer or land surveyor in Wyoming. Other states followed suit. Now, every state has laws regulating the practice of engineering.

For example, in California, every licensed engineer must have a PE stamp.

Why is the stamp important, and how do you get it?

Let’s find out.

Importance of a California Engineer Stamp

More than just a simple ritual or formality, affixing the P.E. stamp is a statement by a practicing engineer.

When used on a set of engineering plans or documents, the P.E. stamp/ seal serves as a formal declaration that the documents meet the standards of a qualified professional. Also that the design complies with the laws and regulations governing the practice of engineering.

Furthermore, the PE stamp confirms the engineer prepared all the work, or it was prepared under their direct supervision. It affirms that the professional is accountable for all the information contained within the sealed document.

Moreover, the stamp is proof that the work satisfies the professional standards necessary to protect the public’s safety, health, and welfare.

Before You Get the PE Stamp

PE Stamp
Source: Pixabay

To get a California professional engineer stamp, you must meet all licensure requirements, including passing the required exam(s).

In California, the Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors (BPELS) regulates the practice of engineering.

Whether you’re already a PE in another state or are working towards your license, the Professional Engineers Act and the Board Rules and Regulations spell out detailed requirements when applying to be a California engineer.

Already a PE in Another State?

PEs from other states (comity applicants) can qualify to practice as Professional Engineers in California if they:

  • Meet California application criteria for licensing as a PE — includes submitting all required documents
  • Provide verification of licensure and exam from the other state by using the verification system available through NCEES
  • Apply for and receive a California license besides their existing license

The Business and Professions Code section 6759 provides additional information regarding comity.

Not Yet a PE?

Registering for and passing the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering & Surveying (NCEES) is the first step in becoming a licensed Professional Engineer. 

After passing the FE exam:

  1. Apply for and receive Engineer-in-Training (EIT) Certification from BPELS.
  2. Ensure you meet the required qualifying experience. Review all applicable laws and regulations to confirm. 
  3. Take the Principles & Practice of Engineering (PE) exam. NCEES statistics show that first-time examinees with four years of engineering experience after graduation have the greatest probability of success on the PE exam.
  4. Apply for licensure as a PE in California. This entails submitting a complete application package to the California Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors (BPELS). If all of your documents are in order, you will receive your license. 

California Professional Engineer Stamp—Design and Details

Under section 6764 of the Professional Engineers Act, “Each professional engineer licensed under this chapter shall, upon licensure, obtain a seal or stamp of a design authorized by the board…”

While the licensee is free to get the seal from any source, California Board Rules and Regulations outline the following requirements of the California professional engineer stamp/ seal:

Stamp Design

The seal required by section 411 of the board rules should not be less than one and one-half (1½) inches in diameter.

Further, it should be of a design similar to those shown below.

Number of certificate or authority Number of certificate or authority

Our stamps meet the current state board PE seal requirements. We continually monitor the regulations to provide you with not only accurate but also high-quality stamps.

What’s more, we ship all orders within one business day, and orders placed before 3 pm EST ship the same day. Additionally, each stamp order includes free shipping and a lifetime warranty.

Stamp Details

The PE stamp should contain the following details:

  • Within the top border of the seal: either “Professional Engineer,” “Registered Professional Engineer,” or “Licensed Professional Engineer.”
  • Within the bottom border of the seal: “State of California.”
  • In the center of the seal:
    • Licensee’s name as it appears on the certificate issued by the Board/an abbreviated form of the licensee’s given name/a combination of initials representing the licensee’s given name — provided the surname listed with the Board appears on the seal and in the signature.
    • Number of certificate of authority.
    • Branch or authority of engineering in which licensed.

Additional Requirements

First, the seal should be capable of leaving a permanent ink representation, a permanent impression, or an electronically generated representation on the documents.

Our digital, wood, and self-inking engineer stamps leave a permanent representation on documents.

California Engineer Stamp and Seal
California Engineer Stamp and Seal

Wood and Rubber Stamp Natural wood
  • base and walnut-stained wooden handle
  • Free digital stamps

California Engineer Stamp and Seal
California Engineer Stamp and Seal

Self-Inking Stamps/ Seals

  • High quality—supplied by Trodat, a leader in self-inking stamps
  • Up to 5,000 impressions before needing to re-ink
  • Dust cap for compact and clean storage
  • Complimentary digital stamps free of charge

California Engineer Stamp and Seal
California Engineer Stamp and Seal

Electronic Seal

  • Multiple formats, including PDF, TIF, and JPG
  • Receive within 24 hours of ordering
  • Free with all rubber and self-inking purchases
  • Option to confirm name spelling and license number in advance

Second, regulations prohibit pre-printing blank forms with the seal/ signature or the use of seal/ signature decals. Furthermore, the use of a rubber stamp of the signature is also prohibited.

Lastly, regulations require each licensee to include the date of signing and sealing immediately below or next to the signature and seal. 

Next Step—Get the Right California PE Stamp

You worked hard to graduate with an engineering degree.

You increased your competence through practical work experience.

You’ve gone through the grueling licensure process and prevailed. Now you’re a licensed California engineer.

Leave the next step to us. We will get you the right professional stamp. Our staff has over 12 years of engineering experience, and we guarantee we’ll meet the State Board specifications.

Simply place your order, send in your details, and we’ll ship your stamp within one business day. In fact, as we said, place your order before 3 PM EST, and we’ll ship the same day. On top of that, receive a free .jpg digital stamp with every purchase of a physical stamp.

Only need a digital stamp? Get it within 24 hours in multiple formats, including PDF, TIF, and JPG.

What about shipping costs?

Shipping is always free at Pro Stamps. We ship using USPS first class packaging, which offers fast, nationwide delivery in three days or less—closely matching the speed of Priority Mail.

In addition, we ship to any U.S. address, P.O. Boxes, and many APO/FPO/DPO destinations. We also include free USPS tracking, which is sent to the email address on the order.

Wondering about the warranty? Each stamp order includes a lifetime warranty.

Featured Image: Pixabay by ds_30