Energy Safe Victoria

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Registered Electrical Contractors (REC)

Energy Safe Victoria requires Registered Electrical Contractors (REC) to operate in a fair, ethical and compliant manner.

To be registered as an REC, applicants must possess the appropriate experience, technical and business knowledge and proven skills to undertake electrical installation work.

ESV requires that a person in the business of electrical contracting, or offering to contract, be registered as an electrical contractor. This is defined as a business, person or company employing electricians to carry out electrical installation work for profit.

Terms of registration

A registration may be issued or renewed subject to any conditions that ESV imposes, including a condition that a registration may apply to only one class of electrical work.

Unless suspended, cancelled or surrendered a registration may be renewed for a period of up to five years, commencing from the date of issue or renewal of the registration.

Types of REC registrations

ESV accepts applications for registration from three types of entities:

  • individuals
  • partnerships
  • companies

For each registration type, both a technical and business supervisor must be in place, and the appropriate consent declarations and qualification requirements must be met.

Individuals

An individual:

  • is an unincorporated business with one owner
  • registration covers a person working alone, who will also be the technical supervisor, and must therefore hold a current Victorian Electrician’s Licence (A Grade)
  • will either have undertaken the Registered Electrical Contractors Course through a registered training organisation (RTO) or will engage an appropriate business supervisor, who will ensure the business is managed in a satisfactory manner
  • can hold a business name, if required.

Partnerships

In a partnership:

  • two or more persons or entities commence a business together as a Registered Electrical Contractor
  • one or more persons may be the technical supervisor and each must also hold a current Victorian Electrician’s Licence (A Grade)
  • at least one of the partners will have undertaken the Registered Electrical Contractors Course through a registered training organisation (RTO) or will have an appropriate business supervisor, who will ensure the business is managed in a satisfactory manner
  • can hold a business name, if required.

Companies

A corporation is a company or group of companies authorised to act as a single entity and seeking to register as an electrical contractor.

The business supervisor can be a senior financial or administrative officer within the organisation with appropriate business qualifications.

Where a company registration and a business name are required, only the company needs to be registered. If the company and business name are the same and they trade under a single ABN.

Family trusts

ESV does not register family trust entities. The trustee corporation acting on behalf of the family trust must be registered as the REC.

Requirements for registration as an electrical contractor

Technical supervisor

Each registered electrical contractor must have a suitably qualified person to take responsibility for ensuring all electrical installation work is designed and executed in a professional and compliant manner.

All apprentices and/or workers holding a Supervised Electrical Worker’s Licence must be appropriately supervised and all electrical work must be carried out by qualified persons using the correct materials.

The technical supervisor must also ensure Certificates of Electrical Safety (COES) are completed, lodged and sent to ESV.

Technical supervisors must hold an appropriate qualification.

The nominated technical supervisor(s) must be a licensed electrician in Victoria and provide evidence of one of the following with this application:

  • G class Electrical Inspector’s licence
  • Licensed Electrician’s Assessment (LEA)
  • Licensed Electrical Mechanics assessment (LEM)
  • Capstone Assessment – transcript required showing modules
  • Technical experience – if you have not completed any of the above assessments, you must apply for this position under technical experience. In order to apply under technical experience, an individual must provide written references from past/current employer(s) to cover their electrical installation work experience for a period of approximately 10 years, (at least five years must be after 2000), to demonstrate that they have been actively working as an electrician. Please ensure references are provided on company letterhead, dated and signed (by a technical supervisor); include reference to the period of employment and a detailed description of the type of hands-on, electrical installation work completed.

Electrical Switchgear Workers may also be nominated as a technical supervisor, responsible only for switchgear fitting work.

Conditions related to technical supervisors

It is a condition of registration that all electrical installation work carried out by the registered electrical contractor is effectively supervised by a technical supervisor. Effective supervision means being present at the site of the electrical work to the extent necessary to ensure that the work is being correctly performed and being aware of the details of the electrical work being performed and giving detailed instructions and directions with respect to the electrical work.

Failure to comply with this condition could result in the contractor’s registration being suspended or cancelled.

Business supervisor

Business supervisors must be a person responsible for the day-to-day management and administration of the electrical contracting business and hold an appropriate qualification or have the required experience.

Nominated business supervisor(s) must provide evidence of one of the following with any application:

  • Registered Electrical Contractors Business Course that is approved by ESV
  • Bachelor of Business (Accounting) – transcript required
  • Bachelor of Business (Administration) – transcript required
  • Certificate IV in Small Business Management
  • Evidence that the nominated business supervisor has managed an electrical contracting business for five years or more (In this instance please provide a detailed account of your experience on a separate sheet)

Conditions related to business supervisors

It is a condition of registration that the electrical contracting business is effectively managed and administered by the business supervisor.

Failure to comply with this condition could result in the contractor’s registration being suspended or cancelled.

Public liability insurance

Registered electrical contractors must hold current public liability insurance (minimum cover of $5 million) against personal injury and/or damage to property in connection with the electrical contracting work of the applicant or their employees or agents.

ESV requires applicants to make an insurance declaration to acknowledge that the appropriate insurance requirements are understood and will be in place prior to carrying out electrical contracting work.

When establishing public liability insurance, applicants should ensure that the entity they wish to register as an electrical contractor is correctly insured with their insurance provider.
 

INSURANCE EXEMPTION – REGISTERED ELECTRICAL CONTRACTORS

Energy Safe Victoria (ESV) no longer requires an application for insurance exemption.

As a registered electrical contractor you are required to ensure that:

  1. Whenever carrying out or offering to carry out electrical contracting work, you will hold a current contract of insurance against public liability for any personal injury or damage to property that may arise in connection with electrical contracting work with a minimum cover of $5,000,000
  2. The insurance cover will be in the name of the electrical contractor as registered with ESV
  3. The electrical contractor registered with ESV will provide evidence to ESV showing that the contractor holds the required insurance cover, whenever requested by ESV.

Note: Carrying out or offering to carry out electrical contracting work without the required insurance is a criminal offence.

Penalty: In the case of a natural person (an individual or sole proprietor), 50 penalty units and in the case of a body corporate (corporation or company) 250 penalty units.

Keep your registration card in a safe place and only carry out electrical contracting work if you satisfy the conditions above.

Should you have any questions, please contact the Licensing team on Freecall 1800 815 721 or by email: licensing@energysafe.vic.gov.au .

Exemptions from registration

Registration as an electrical contractor is not required in the following circumstances:

  • a company employing licensed personnel to carry out electrical installation work only on the premises owned or occupied by the company
  • a person engaged in a contract and the part of the contract relating to electrical installation work is sub-contracted to a registered electrical contractor (sub-contracting arrangements)
  • a person who holds a Victorian electrician’s licence and undertakes to carry out electrical installation work from time to time for no financial return (no profit or gain)
  • a person who holds the appropriate Restricted Electrical Worker’s licence (Disconnect/Reconnect licence) and undertakes electrical work permitted under that licence (where electrical work is not the main occupation of the business), or
  • a person who holds an Occupier’s licence and undertakes electrical installation work permitted under that licence.

Obligations as an electrical contractor

A person must not carry on or offer to carry on or hold out that the person carries on or is willing to carry on any class of electrical contracting that, under the regulations, is a prescribed class of electrical contracting unless the person is registered under the Electricity Safety Act 1998 as an electrical contractor in respect of electrical contracting of that class and holds the prescribed insurance. The prescribed insurance is insurance against public liability for personal injury or damage to property in conjunction with the electrical contracting work of the registered electrical contractor with a minimum cover of $5,000,000.

A REC is responsible for all electrical installation work it is engaged to carry out and must ensure that the work is safe, complies with the regulations, is inspected if required and that a certificate of electrical safety is issued for all work carried out. A REC must electronically notify ESV each time a certificate is completed, give a copy of the certificate to the person for whom the work was carried out and lodge a copy of the certificate with ESV.

A REC must not publish or cause to be published any advertisements, notice or statement that the contractor carries on or is willing to carry on electrical contracting work unless the advertisement, notice or statement includes the registered number of the contractor.

A REC must keep a register of licensed electrical installation workers who are employed by the contractor. This register must be available for inspection at all reasonable times by ESV. A REC must not employ a person in the carrying out of electrical installation work unless the person is a licensed electrical installation worker of a particular class related to the contractor’s business or an apprentice within the meaning of the Education and Training Reform Act 2006, in a trade that involves carrying out electrical installation work of a class relating to the contractor’s business.

An application for renewal of registration must be accompanied by details of any changes in the information provided in the application for the registration or for the most recent renewal of registration or in any other circumstances relating to the application.

Registered electrical contractors must notify ESV in writing within 10 business days after:

  • any change in the circumstances of a person nominated as a technical supervisor that would affect the person’s ability to effectively supervise electrical installation work carried out by the electrical contractor
  • any change in the circumstances of a person nominated as a business supervisor that would affect the person’s ability to be responsible for the management and administration of the business of the electrical contractor
  • any other circumstances relating to the name or status as a legal person of the registered electrical contractor.

Fees

Refer to ESV’s licensing and registration fees page for each licence and registration type, here.
Application fees for electrical licensing and registration are non-refundable. A new application and fee will be required should you choose to apply again.

Renewing a registration as electrical contractor

ESV will send a renewal notice to the last known address at least two months prior to the expiry date of the current registration.

It is your responsibility to ensure your registration is current and ESV has your current address and contact details. Renewal must be completed prior to expiry, otherwise your registration will expire and ESV may require a new application at the new application fee rate.
Read more about renewing a registration or replacing a registration.

Renew your registration via ESV’s Online Services once you receive your renewal notice.

Changing registered electrical contractor details

ESV must be informed of any changes to registration information, such as business type, contact details or the addition or change of a business or technical supervisor.

Please refer to our Changing registration details page for further information, here.

Contact our Licensing team

If you need assistance with ESV’s online forms or have a query about licensing and registration, contact our Licensing and Registration team directly on 1800 815 721 or send an email to licensing@energysafe.vic.gov.au.