Electrical Safety Authority – Administrative Penalties

As of April 1st, the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) will have the regulatory authority to issue Administrative Penalties.  This amended legislated authority is an important step forward in the efforts by the ESA to address illegal and unsafe electrical installations in construction projects across the province.

Here are some quick facts:

• What are Administrative Penalties?
They are an Order to pay a financial penalty in respect of an instance of non-compliance with a specified requirement of the Electricity Act or its Regulations.

• Who Could Get an Administrative Penalty?
The ESA plans to use these penalties as a tool to address the underground economy. Where applicable, they will also be part of the ESA’s escalation response for other non-compliances.

• How Is ESA Addressing Non-Compliances Now?
Administrative Penalties can be issued for acts of non-compliance that are currently addressed via provincial prosecutions, licence suspension, terms & conditions, warning letters, defects and other administrative actions. ESA will still be using these tools, but now has the additional authority to issue Administrative Penalties where that is the proportional response.

• Who Will Issue Administrative Penalties?
The Penalties will be issued by way of an Order by a Statutory Director of ESA, either a General Manager or the Director of Licensing. They will not be handed out by ESA inspectors.

• How Much Are the Penalties?
Each penalty can be up to $10,000 per infraction. There can, however, be multiple penalties per instance. (For example, someone who is outfitting a commercial space installs lighting without an electrical contractor licence or notification for the work. In such a case, two administrative penalties could be issued against the individual.)

For general contractors looking to engage in electrical work as a part of their project, make sure you hire a Licensed Electrical Contractor to conduct any electrical work. ESA Licensed Electrical Contractors are the only businesses, with limited exemptions, in Ontario legally authorized to do electrical work. They are required to be fully insured, will arrange notifications (permits) with ESA, have certified staff to perform electrical work and can provide an ESA certificate of acceptance.

For more information on ESA’s Administrative Program please visit our Administrative Penalty FAQ page here.

New Penalties for Non-Compliant Electrical Work

Should anyone have any questions, or require any further assistance please contact Giovanni Cautillo at giovanni@ogca.ca or directly at 905.671.3969.