A series of changes to the ECS scheme have been coming into effect since August 2018. Take a look at our summary below and click on any link to read more information about the changes and why they are being made.
Read our article 'Addressing the Myths' to clarify any questions around gold card, 18th Edition and Registered Electrician changes.
The new rules regarding Registered Electrician and 18th Edition only apply to those:
If you currently hold a standard gold card, providing your card does not become more than one year out of date, you can continue to renew your card as normal without the 18th Edition or the obligation to sign up to Registered Electrician status. If you gain the 18th Edition but do not wish to sign up to Registered Electrician status, you can still have BS7671:2018 endorsed on the rear of your card as normal.
You will still need to pass the ECS Health, Safety & Environmental Assessment before you can renew.
What’s happening? From 1st July 2021 ALL initial applications will need to meet the new FESS (Fire, Emergency and Security Systems) card requirements. Existing cards, unless a formal industry apprenticeship is held, will need to meet the new FESS card requirements when they are due for renewal after 1st July 2021.
More information – FESS card criteria
What’s happening? From 1st January 2021 ALL initial applications will need to meet the new Network Infrastructure card requirements. Existing cards, unless a formal industry apprenticeship is held, will need to meet the new Network Infrastructure card requirements when they are due for renewal after 1st July 2021.
More information – Network Infrastructure card criteria
What’s happening? Cardholders must either:
What’s happening? Cardholders must either:
For both options the cardholder must also undertake a level 4 or above H&S course and also pass the ECS HS&E Assessment if not already exempt via the specific H&S course.
What’s happening? From 01 Jan 2019, completing apprentices with 17th will receive an Installation or Maintenance Electrician gold card and can upgrade to Registered Electrician when they gain the 18th.
More information -
What’s happening? From 01 January 2019 anyone applying for an Installation or Maintenance Electrician gold card for the first time will be required to sign up to Registered Electrician status. This means the applicant must be qualified to the 18th Edition edition of BS7671 and sign up to a Code of Professional Practice, in addition to holding the minimum qualifications required for the card.
What’s happening? From 01 January 2020, when Registered Electricians renew their card they must hold the 18th Edition in order to maintain their Registered Electrician status. More information…
What’s happening? From 01 July 2019 any existing Installation or Maintenance Electrician gold card holders who have let their card lapse for more than a year will be required to renew as a Registered Electrician.
Installation or Maintenance Electricians who hold a current and valid gold card, issued for the first time prior to January 1st 2019, but who do not hold the 18th Edition, will be able to continue to renew their card as normal. The only change is that from 1st July 2019 they should renew within 12 months of card expiry. Furthermore, current cardholders who gain the 18th Edition but do not require Registered Electrician status can still have BS7671:2018 endorsed on the rear of their card as normal.
What’s happening? The Related Discipline card is being streamlined to cover a smaller number of occupations: Field Engineer, Equipment Installer, Ariel and Satellite Engineer, Security Systems Installer, Controls System Installer. The new requirements for these cards are:
When? The new Related Discipline card will take effect soon – in the meantime please apply as normal under the existing criteria. More information...
What’s happening? The new ECS Site Support card is for those in a role where they are supporting the administration of a contract and need access to a building or site under construction. This covers titles such as Design Engineer, Quantity Surveyor, Commissioning Engineer, IT Manager, H&S Manager, CAD Engineer, Compliance Auditor. Applicants need to provide proof of employment with an electrical contractor, pass a specific H&S course and hold the ECS HS&E Assessment, unless they are exempt after taking the H&S course.
What's happening? The ECS Site Visitor card has been withdrawn, in alignment with the CSCS decision to withdraw the CSCS Site Visitor Card.
If you need an ECS card to access a construction site there are other cards that may be appropriate for you, for example a site support card. If you are just visiting a site under supervision and not carrying out construction related activities you will need check with the main contractor to whether you need a card or not.