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ESA & Contractor Licensing

Fiscal 2017 Summary Report for the Electrical Contractor Community

Since 2001, the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) and the electrical contracting sector have been working together to develop a provincial licensing framework proposal to address concerns with the current licensing scheme of electrical contractors and master electricians throughout the province of Ontario

The 2003 Provincial Auditor's Report noted electrical safety concerns and recommended that the Ministry of Consumer Services and the ESA work with stakeholders to develop consistent provincial standards for ongoing licensing and training of electricians to improve public safety.

In late 2004 the Government of Ontario amended the Electricity Act, 1998, with the passage of Bill 70, to enable the establishment of a statutory framework for province-wide licensing of electrical contractors and master electricians in the compulsory electrical trades, to be administered by the ESA.

Ministry of Consumer Services News ReleaseAs of January 1, 2007 no person shall operate an Electrical Contracting Business in Ontario without first obtaining an Electrical Contractor Licence issues by ECRA/ESA.

As of January 1, 2007 no person shall assume the responsibility of a Designated Master Electrician for the carrying out of electrical work on behalf of an Electrical Contractor without first obtaining a Master Electrician Licence issues by ECRA/ESA.


Ontario Regulation 89/99 designates ESA as the responsible authority for purposes of administering Part VIII of the Electricity Act, 1998.

Bill 70 provides legislative changes to Part VIII, Section 113 of the Electricity Act, giving ESA the authority to establish and enforce a province-wide licensing system for electrical contractors, master electricians and electricians.

Bill 152 Ministry of Government Services Consumer Protection and Service Modernization Act, 2006. This will allow the ESA to go after unlicensed contractors doing potentially unsafe work in people's homes or businesses. The proposed changes in this bill will give the ESA stronger enforcement powers to actively pursue individuals and businesses that falsely hold themselves out to be electrical contractors.


Ontario Regulation 570/05, Licensing of Electrical Contractors and Master Electricians which sets out the requirements for Provincial Licensing was approved by the Ontario Government on November 2, 2005. This regulation comes into force beginning July 1, 2006.

Ontario Regulation 187/09, Appeal Of Director's Decision On Licences Under Part VIII Of The Electricity Act, 1998.

Licensing Regulation O. Reg 570/05 has been amended to include 434A Powerline Technician

434A Powerline Technician Certificate of Qualification

The Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) proposed regulatory amendment to the Licensing of Electrical Contractors and Master Electricians Regulation, (O. Reg 570/05) has been approved and will be effective on July 1, 2011.

The regulatory amendments will assist a group of provisional licence holders who could not meet the prior licensing requirements to transition into the full licensing regime. Effective July 1, 2011, the 434A Powerline Technician Certificate of Qualification (C of Q) will be recognized under section 11 of the Regulation and added to the current list of qualifications accepted under the Master Electrician Licence requirements.  As a result, affected provisional licence holders are now eligible to apply for a Master Electrician licence if all other requirements set out in the regulation are met.

For full details regarding the process for obtaining a Master Electrician licence click here.

If you would like to review the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services' regulatory amendments, please visit e-laws.

For further information related to the administration of the Licensing Regulation, please contact ESA directly via email at, or by calling ESA's Licensing and Certification department at 1-877-ESA-SAFE (1-877-372-7233) – press option "3".

If you would like to learn more about how to obtain a 434A Powerline Technician C of Q or whether you would qualify for this designation, please contact the Ontario College of Trades apprenticeship office by calling toll-free: 1-855-299-0028 or 647-847-3000 or go to:

Ontario College of Trades toll-free 1-855-299-0028 Toronto 647-847-3000Ontario Regulatory Registry Website

Continuing to Step Forward

The Electrical Safety Authority working in conjunction with an Industry Stakeholder held consultations in 2008 and 2009 with affected stakeholders regarding potential amendments to the regulation. The purpose of the consultations was to develop proposals that could assist companies such as yours who could not meet the current licensing requirements to transition into the full licensing regime.  The final Committee recommendations are outlined in the documents below.

Final Recommendations, Apr 8, 2009Contractors Review Oct. 2008