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What Is There to Know About Mandatory Continuing Education

Contractors
Contractors

What Is There to Know About Mandatory Continuing Education

Advice for contractorWhat Is There to Know About Mandatory Continuing Education

Since April 1st, 2022, certain specialized contractors and general contractors are now required to commit to continuing education. Should you be among the many individuals affected by this latest mandatory continuing education, note that you must complete a certain amount of educational training hours every two years to maintain your licence.

Said training must be pertinent to your area of expertise, such as heating, building, plumbing, or electricity. Note that the deadline to submit your completed hours—March 31, 2024—is around the corner. 

How does this new measure affect construction contractors in Quebec, and what is there to know about it?

For whom will continuing education be mandatory?

Contractors on the field

Source: Canva

First off, it’s important to highlight that this measure doesn’t apply to all contractors. Yet 27,000 workers must abide by it. It relates to the following general contractor licences: 

  • 1.1.1 – New residential buildings covered by a guarantee plan, class I

  • 1.1.2 – New residential buildings covered by a guarantee plan, class II

  • 1.2 – Small building contractor

  • 1.3 – Building contractor of all kinds

As for specialized contractor licences, they’re as follows:

  • 15.1.1 – Pulsed air heating systems for certain work that is not reserved exclusively to master pipe-mechanics

  • 15.2.1 – Natural gas burner systems for certain work that is not reserved exclusively to master pipe-mechanics

  • 15.3.1 – Oil burner systems for certain work that is not reserved exclusively to master pipe-mechanics

  • 15.4.1 – Hydronic heating system for certain work that is not reserved exclusively to master pipe-mechanics

  • 15.5.1 – Plumbing for certain work that is not reserved exclusively to master pipe-mechanics

Mandatory Continuing Education: The Measurable Results 

Handshaking between contractors

Source: CanvaThis new mandatory continuing education regulation has several purposes. First off, note that the majority of concerned workers must complete 16 hours of training over a two-year period. Nevertheless, said number of hours will be higher for workers who are qualified for numerous licence sub-categories, which could equate to 24 or 32 hours. 

Likewise, it’s important to pinpoint that the same principle applies to workers with licence sub-categories that aren’t solely targetted by the RBQ, but also by the CMMTQ and CMEQ. If this mandatory procedure isn’t adhered to, the company's licence may be suspended and, as for the worker, they will fail to maintain their qualifications.

Why was this measure implemented?

All in all, this new requirement is structured to improve the quality of construction work and better protect homeowners seeking out and hiring workers.

With this in mind, we’re counting on contractors to remain abreast regarding knowledge development in their chosen field of expertise, especially in matters relating to technological progress taking place in the industry. In a similar vein, narrowing the importance of remaining up-to-date with regulatory changes that may occur will naturally impact the way specific tasks are being carried out and how several projects are executed. 

Auditor General’s Report

Bear in mind that the Auditor General’s report published back on June 2, 2022, at the National Assembly, pinpointed the RBQ’s shortcomings, most notably regarding the measures implemented to ensure working contractors have the necessary skills to effectively carry out their work. 

Secondly, some criticism was brought to the forefront concerning administered examinations to obtain RBQ licences, which haven't been renewed quite as often as they should have. (Some examinations dating back to 2008 are still being used to this day.)

A lack of vigilance regarding background checks, whether that be for specialized contractors or general contractors, a poor oversight when it comes to contractors having numerous non-conformities flagged in their files, on top of scarce construction worksite inspections are all part of the highlighted challenges. 

Let’s not forget to underline the criticism stated regarding the deadline granted to report a construction defect, as well as those concerning the required security deposit amounts. According to the Auditor General, and as per the 2022 published report, the latter are considered lacking regarding certain situations.

Upcoming Measures

This measure is part of a broader set of changes scheduled on the RBQ’s side, including but not limited to the upcoming addition of 128 new inspectors on construction worksites, as well as the digitalization of examinations, which started its course over the summer of 2022. 

Let’s wrap this up by highlighting that the APCHQ is already hard at work, elaborating new content to meet the needs of general and specialized contractors who are impacted by this new regulation. 


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Last modified 2024-04-29

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