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Ottawa area contractor fined $7,500 for illegal use of professional engineer’s seal and protected title “professional engineer”


Toronto – (March 8, 2016) – On March 3, Jeff Rubino of Carleton Place, Ontario, was convicted of three counts of breaching the Professional Engineers Act by the Ontario Court of Justice and fined $7,500 for using a fabricated professional engineer’s seal and the title “professional engineer” on a report submitted to the Ottawa building department.

The City of Ottawa sought additional information, including a professional engineer’s approval, in relation to a building permit application to modify a local home that included removing a load bearing wall and inserting a laminated veneer lumber beam and adjustable posts. The general contractor on the project retained Rubino to respond to the City. Rubino has never been licensed as a professional engineer in Ontario nor has he ever held, or acted under and in accordance with, a Certificate of Authorization.

In his report, Rubino used a seal that duplicated the wording, content and style of the seal reserved for professional engineers. He also referred to himself as a “Professional Engineer of Ontario” and used a purported licence number that was similar to those issued to professional engineers but that did not match any number in PEO’s register of licence holders.

The matter came to the attention of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) when a city building department official checked Rubino’s licence status upon receiving the report bearing the seal and title.

His Worship Richard C.P. Sculthorpe convicted Rubino of three offences relating to the illegal use of the seal and protected title and for not acting under, and in accordance with, a Certificate of Authorization.

Nick Hambleton, associate counsel, regulatory compliance, represented PEO in this matter. PEO would like to thank the homeowner, contractor on the project and Ottawa building department for their cooperation in its investigation.

How to verify licensure

To check whether an individual is licensed or a firm holds a Certificate of Authorization (C of A), search the directories of practitioners (licence and C of A holders) at www.peo.on.ca. To report unlicensed individuals and unauthorized companies, contact PEO’s enforcement hotline at 416-840-1444 or 1-800- 339-3716, ext 1444, or email enforcement@peo.on.ca.

About Professional Engineers Ontario

Through the Professional Engineers Act, PEO governs over 85,000 licence and certificate holders and regulates professional engineering in Ontario to serve and protect the public. Professional engineering safeguards life, health, property, economic interests, the public welfare and the environment. Professional engineers can be identified by the P.Eng. after their names. Holders of limited licences can be identified by LEL after their names.

For additional information or interviews, please contact:

David Smith, Manager, Communications
Professional Engineers Ontario
Tel: 416-840-1068, 1-800-339-3716, ext. 1068;
Cell: 416-458-4140
Email: dsmith@peo.on.ca

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