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Registered Electrical Contractors (REC)

Information about Registered Electrical Contractors and business/technical supervisors.

Overview

Energy Safe Victoria (ESV) requires Registered Electrical Contractors (REC) to operate in a safe and compliant manner.

To be registered as a 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 or cancelled, 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
  • will either be the technical supervisor, and must therefore hold a current Victorian Electrician’s Licence (A Grade) and hold the appropriate qualifications or will nominate an appropriately qualified Electrician as the technical supervisor, who will ensure the effective supervision of the electrical installation work carried out by the business
  • will either have undertaken the Registered Electrical Contractors Course through an electrical training provider or will nominate an appropriately qualified business supervisor, who will ensure the business is managed in a satisfactory manner
  • can hold a business name (registered appropriately with ASIC), 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) and be appropriately qualified
  • at least one of the partners will have undertaken the Registered Electrical Contractors Course through an electrical training provider, or will nominate an appropriately qualified business supervisor, who will ensure the business is managed in a satisfactory manner
  • can hold a business name (registered appropriately with ASIC), if required.

Companies

A company:

  • is an incorporated company with one or more directors
  • will have one or more technical supervisors who must hold a current Victorian Electrician’s Licence (A Grade) and hold the appropriate qualifications. The technical supervisor(s) will ensure the effective supervision of the electrical installation work carried out by the company
  • will have one or more appropriately qualified business supervisors, who will ensure the business is managed in a satisfactory manner
  • can hold a business name (registered to the company appropriately with ASIC), if required.

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 under a company structure.

Requirements for registration

Technical and business supervisors

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

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

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 exemptions lifted for Registered Electrical Contractors previously issued under insurance exemption with no card

ESV no longer requires an application for insurance exemption. Upon renewal, a new licence card will be automatically issued.

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.

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

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 1998External Link 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.

An 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. An 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.

An REC must display their REC number on any advertisements, notices or statements which indicate that the REC is conducting, or willing to conduct, electrical contracting work.

An 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. An 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 2006External Link , 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.

Changing details

  • ESV must be informed of any changes to registration information within 10 business days of the relevant event, such as business/company name, business structure, contact details or the addition or removal of a business or technical supervisor. This can be managed via ESVConnectExternal Link .

Fees

Refer to ESV’s Licensing fees.

Application fees include a $70 non-refundable administration component. Application fees must be paid at the time a licence application is submitted. Credit card payment is required.

Registration renewal

ESV will send an email reminder to the business supervisor(s) of the REC 3 months prior to the expiry of the REC.

It is the business supervisor(s)'s responsibility to ensure the registration is current and that ESV has the correct contact details for the REC.

Energy Safe Victoria must cancel the registration of an electrical contractor who fails to apply for renewal of registration by the renewal date.

Read more about renewing a licence or replacing a licence card.

You can renew your licence via ESVConnectExternal Link with a Credit card.

Reinstating your cancelled REC

You may apply to reinstate a cancelled REC by completing the REC Reinstatement Form:

It is important to note that if the REC has been cancelled for 5 years or more, the technical supervisor will be required to complete the Licensed Electricians Assessment prior to applying to reinstate the REC.

Business and technical supervisors

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

To be registered as an REC all businesses must have a business supervisor and a technical supervisor.

Business supervisor

The person listed as the business supervisor assumes responsibility for the management and administration of the business.

Read more about the responsibilities of a business supervisor.

What do I need to do to be a business supervisor?

Technical supervisor

The technical supervisor is responsible for ensuring that all electrical work undertaken by the REC is designed and executed in a professional and compliant manner, that all apprentices and/or workers holding a Supervised Electrical Worker’s Licence are appropriately supervised, and that all work is carried out by qualified persons using the correct materials to be compliant with the applicable regulations.

Additionally, the technical supervisor must ensure that Certificates of Electrical Safety (COES) are completed, lodged and sent to ESV, as the ‘responsible person’.

Read more about the responsibilities of a technical supervisor.

What do I need to do to be a technical supervisor?

  • Complete the relevant nomination form for a technical supervisor
  • Additionally, you will:
    • Hold, and continue to hold, a current Victorian Electrician’s Licence and be able to supply at least one of the following:
      • Evidence of completion of the Licensed Electrician’s Assessment (LEA) within 5 years from the date of your application
      • Evidence of holding a ‘G’ class inspector licence
      • Evidence of completion of a Capstone Assessment in another state or jurisdiction, which ESV recognises as an equivalent requirement
      • Evidence of technical experience – see details below.

Technical experience

To apply under technical experience, written references must be provided from past/current employer(s) to cover employment for a period of approximately 10 years (post 2007) to demonstrate that you have been actively working as an electrician. References must be provided on company letterhead, dated and signed (by a technical supervisor/manager) and include:

  • period of employment, and
  • a detailed breakdown of the type of hands-on electrical installation experience.

Adding or removing a business or technical supervisor

Business and/or technical supervisor changes must be requested by the business supervisor for the REC via ESVConnectExternal Link

Date: 08/02/2023 9:53

Controlled document

The currency and accuracy of this document cannot be guaranteed once printed or saved to a storage device. If in doubt, please check the ESV website for the current version.

Reviewed 31 January 2023

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