Special Authorization

Les Marais, Alain Carle architecte
Photo: Adrien Williams

Pour la version française, cliquez ici

Under section 42.4 of the Professional Code, the Ordre des architectes du Québec (OAQ) may, by special authorization, grant a person legally authorized to practice the profession of architect outside Québec the right to use the title reserved for members of the OAQ or to engage in Québec in the professional activities which are reserved to them in Québec.

Special Authorization

A foreign architect who wishes to practice in Québec for the purpose of carrying out a specific project may apply for a special authorization, which is valid for a period of one year and is renewable. The architect must comply with the following conditions:

- the application must be submitted by a natural person and not by a legal person ;

- the application requires working in direct collaboration with a member in good standing of the OAQ ;

- for the entire duration of the permit holder’s stay in Québec, the holder must submit proof of professional liability insurance coverage which is equivalent to that provided by the Fonds des architectes.  

Holding a special authorization does not entitle a foreign architect to open an architectural firm in Québec.

Application and Request for Renewal

It is preferable to submit your online application or request for renewal as soon as possible in order to avoid any delay in the commencement of the project or the work.

Ensure that you have prepared all of the following documents, in French or in English, so that your application will be complete :

- a document establishing your identity ;

- an attestation of membership in good standing provided by your professional order or by the authority which is responsible for regulating the profession of architect in your country ;

- a letter from the owner which specifies the name of the project, the location of the worksite, the approximate budget and the principal architects who are collaborating on the project ;

- proof of professional liability insurance coverage for acts performed in Québec ;

- payment of the fee which corresponds to the project cost.

   Project Cost (in millions of dollars)   

   Applicable fee   
Less than 1$ 1 657
1 à 3$ 2 208
3 to 10$ 3 310
10 to 20$ 4 967
20 to 50$ 6 029
Greater than 50$ 7 721


Processing of the Application

Each application, once complete, will be examined by the members of the committee on admissions provided that it has been received by the applicable deadline shown below.

   Meetings of the committee
   on admissions in 2017   
   Deadlines for receipt of the application   
July 4 No later than June 30 at 12:00 (noon)
September 28 No later than September 20 at 12:00 (noon)

If the application conforms to the conditions for issuing a special authorization which have been established by the board of directors of the OAQ in accordance with the Professional Code, the committee on admissions shall make a recommendation to the president of the OAQ, who has the power to issue or renew a special authorization.

A foreign architect who has been issued a special authorization will also receive a seal which is valid for the specified period – and only for this period – and which will allow the architect to seal the plans for the project in question.

Application Form