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How to Verify a Professional's License in Pittsburgh?

Several agencies issue licenses to professionals operating in the City of Pittsburgh. These include the Pennsylvania Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs, which offers 29 occupational and professional license types via various licensing boards and commissions to professionals like Landscape Architects, Engineers, and Land Surveyors. Similarly, the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office issues licenses to home improvement contractors operating in Pittsburgh. In addition, building professionals such as general contractors working in the city must also register for a license with the Pittsburgh Permit, Licenses & Inspection Office. It is imperative that you confirm the validity of a professional's license in Pittsburgh before service is retained. To verify the licenses of Pittsburgh professionals, you can use the online license verification service tool maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of State Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs. You can also verify professional licenses issued by the Attorney General's office through its Registered Contractors platform. For questions on the licensing status of a city registered professional, as well as queries concerning the city's permitting procedure, you can contact the Pittsburgh Permit, Licenses & Inspection Office via either email or phone number (412) 255-2175.

You may be required to meet specific city requirements like obtaining permits when hiring professionals for some type of project. The Permits, Licenses & Inspection office issues different permits for various projects, including building, demolition, land operations, electrical, and plumbing permits. If you fail to obtain the required permits before commencing work, you may be liable for administrative fines or criminal prosecution. For inquiries on the city's permit requirements and procedure, contact the Permits, Licenses & Inspection office at (412) 255-2175.

Do Pittsburgh Neighborhood Councils
Issue Permits?

There are currently 31 recognized registered community organizations in the City of Pittsburgh. These organizations operate as a bridge between the community and the Pittsburgh Department of City Planning to ensure all proposed projects meet the specific neighborhood development threshold. You can find your neighborhood's registered community organizations using the Who's My RCO tool, which also enables you to view contact these organizations' contact details, meeting locations, and dates. Note that registered community organizations do not issue permits, however, they ensure that the community has an opportunity to give input on zoning decisions that impact the neighborhood. For example, Uptown Partners helped generate 700 surveys to garner vital community feedback that helped create the nation's first EcoInnovation Districts, the Uptown/West Oakland EcoInnovation District. Similarly, the Bloomfield Development Corporation held a development activities meeting, which gave the neighborhood a chance to review the proposed development of a drive-through car wash at 4808 Baum Boulevard.

How to File an Unfair Business
Complaint in Pittsburgh?

The City of Pittsburgh protects its residents from unfair and fraudulent business practices of professionals through the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office. You can file an unfair business complaint with this office by completing an online Complaint Report Form. Upon reviewing the complaint, the District Attorney's office will prosecute if probable criminal elements are established or refer the complaint to higher agencies for further investigation and appropriate regulatory decision. Note that if a review reveals that your complaint is a civil matter, then you may seek restitution for personal damages by approaching a Pittsburgh Civil Court. If you seek a monetary judgment that does not exceed $12,000, you can file a Pittsburgh small claims action at the Allegheny County Magisterial District Court. Small claims actions are typically simplified, and your case can be heard without a lawyer and jury. However, the court cannot offer you legal advice or opinion concerning your case, and you should always consider getting proper legal advice before moving forward with any type of legal action. You can contact the Allegheny County Bar Association at (412) 261-6161 for referrals to lawyers in Pittsburgh. You can also visit this office in person at:

  • 400 Koppers Building
  • 436 Seventh Avenue
  • Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Professions in Pittsburgh