Only a ‘registered Architect’ or a ‘registered firm of Architects’ can use the title and style of “Architect”. Every time an Architect signs an agreement with the client, he is supposed to quote his ‘Registration Number’. If any person misuses the title and style of Architect, such acts tantamount to committing a criminal offence, which is punishable under section 36 or 37 (2) of the Architects Act, 1972, on first conviction with fine of five hundred rupees, and on any subsequent conviction with imprisonment which may extend to six months or with a fine not exceeding one thousand rupees.
WHY IS IT NECESSARY THAT AN ARCHITECT BE REGISTERED WITH THE COA?
It is very important that every qualified Architect, desirous of carrying on the profession of ‘Architect’, be registered with the Council of Architecture because any reference in law to an Architect, shall be deemed to be a reference to an Architect registered under the Act.
WHAT DOES THE REGISTRATION WITH COA ENTITLE?
The registration with the Council of Architecture entitles:
- A person to practice the profession of Architecture, provided he holds a Certificate of Registration with up-to-date renewals;
- A person to use the title and style of Architect. The title and style of Architect can also be used by a firm of Architects, of which all partners are registered with COA.
- Limited Companies, Private/Public Companies, societies and other juridical persons are not entitled to use the title and style of Architect nor are they entitled to practice the profession of Architecture.
WHO IS QUALIFIED TO BE REGISTERED WITH THE COUNCIL OF ARCHITECTURE?
A person can have his name entered in the Register, on payment of the prescribed fee, if he resides or carries out the profession of Architecture in India and has the necessary qualifications, after having undergone education in accordance with the Council of Architecture – Minimum Standards of Architectural Education Regulations, 1983.
WHAT IS THE RELEVANCE OF THE REGISTRATION NUMBER?
On entry in the Register, the Registrar issues a Certificate of registration, in which the Council of Architecture’s Registration Number is mentioned. This Registration Number has to be quoted by the Architect, when signing on an Agreement or on any documents related to the project for which the Architect has been signed.
IN WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES IS AN ARCHITECT NOT REGISTERED?
An Architect may not be registered in rare cases, if he has not applied for registration or if he has not paid the registration fee or renewed the registration. However in most cases, an Architect is not registered because he does not hold a recognized qualification, or because he has not successfully completed the Architecture course, or because his name has been removed from the register for some act of professional misconduct or for some other reasons such as:
- If a request has been received to that effect.
- If the Architect has died since the last publication of the Register.
- If the Architect’s name had been entered by error or on account of misrepresentation or suppression of material fact.
- If the Architect has been convicted of any offence which involves moral turpitude.
- If the Architect is an undischarged solvent.
- If the Architect has been adjudged by a competent court to be of unsound mind.
In case of a person whose name has been removed from the Register or who has died, his legal representative should surrender his Certificate of Registration to the Registrar, and the name so removed will be published in the Official Gazette.
If any person whose name has been removed from the Register fails to surrender his Certificate of Registration, he shall be punishable with fine of one hundred rupees, and, in case of continued failure, with an additional fine of ten rupees for each day thereafter.
WHAT IS THE PENALTY FOR FALSELY CLAIMING TO BE REGISTERED?
Many times ‘pseudo architects’ operate as if they are real Architects and dupe the general public. The only way you can prevent such malpractises, is by insisting that the Architect gives you his ‘Registration Number’. If any person whose name is not entered in the Register but falsely represents that it is entered, or uses in connection with his name or title, any words to suggest that he is registered, such acts tantamount to committing a criminal offence, and is punishable under section 36 or 37 (2) of the Architects Act, 1972, with a fine of one thousand rupees.
WHO CAN COMPLAIN ABOUT A ‘PSEUDO ARCHITECT’?
Anybody who confirms that a person pretending to be an “Architect” is not registered with the Council of Architecture, can lodge a police complaint against the ‘pseudo Architect’ and complain to the Council as well. Before this, the complainant must verify with the Council if the said ‘Architect’ is registered or not. One can complain to the COA in this Complaint Form.
This post was about the Registration of Architects, why it is important for Architects to be registered with the COA, in India. To know more about the Procedure for Registration, go to:
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For more information about the Council of Architecture (CoA) guidelines, go to: