Empire Construction fined for using fake engineer’s seal

Ontario Construction News staff writer

The Ontario Court of Justice at Cornwall has fined a corporation and its principal $10,000 for applying a facsimile of a professional engineer’s seal to design drawings without the knowledge or consent of the professional engineer.

6993231 Canada Inc. (doing business as Empire Construction) and its principal, Edsel Byers, were retained by a client to assist with the construction of a canvas structure on the client’s property. In preparing design drawings for the client, Empire Construction and Byers copied a professional engineer’s seal from a previous set of drawings onto the new drawings, without the professional engineer having reviewed the new drawings and without the professional engineer’s knowledge or consent. Empire Construction and Byers then gave the improperly sealed drawings to the client, who submitted them to the Township of North Dundas in connection with a permit application.

On April 26, 2023, Byers pled guilty to one count of breaching section 40(2)(c) of the Professional Engineers Act and Empire Construction pled guilty to one count of breaching section 40(3)(b) of the Professional Engineers Act in connection with this conduct. The court  imposed a $5,000 fine on Byers and a $5,000 fine on Empire Construction.

Matthew Howe (counsel) and Annecy Pang (student-at-law), both from the Toronto law firm Polley Faith LLP, represented Professional Engineers Ontario on the matter. PEO would like to thank the Township of North Dundas and the engineer for their cooperation in this investigation.


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