DSA investigates and takes appropriate disciplinary action when a complaint for alleged misconduct is submitted about a CASp. The purpose of the complaint process is to ensure compliance with statutory requirements, preserve high standards of practice for all CASps, and to protect the health, safety, and welfare of consumers and the general public. Activities subject to disciplinary action include, but are not limited to, unprofessional conduct, misuse of Disability Access Inspection Certificates (DAIC), conviction of a substantially related crime, breach of contract, and practicing without valid certification.
To file a complaint, please fill out the form DSA 607: CASp Consumer Complaint (PDF - 534 KB) and send it via email to CASprogram@dgs.ca.gov or mail to:
Division of the State Architect
CASp Certification Unit
1102 Q Street, Ste 5100
Sacramento, CA 95811
After receiving the complaint, DSA will contact the complainant and the CASp. If the issue is not within DSA's jurisdiction to resolve, the complainant will be advised if another state or local agency may be able to help, or if alternative means of redress should be pursued. If the investigation by DSA confirms the alleged misconduct, the CASp will be notified of disciplinary action. Disciplinary Actions and Final Decisions are a matter of public record and the complainant will be notified of the outcome of the case.
In preparing a report according to Civil Code §55.53(a), and in issuing a DAIC, the CASp issues an opinion on whether individual elements are in compliance with the applicable standards. The inspection results in a determination of the status of compliance of the facility with the applicable standards in effect at the time it was originally constructed or last altered. Due to the inherently subjective nature of interpretations, neither the determination in the report nor the DAIC "certifies" the facility is in compliance with the applicable standards. The DAIC is simply a confirmation that the facility was inspected by a CASp; the DAIC does not signify the facility is code or ADA compliant.
DSA will not investigate a complaint that addresses the CASp's opinion or interpretation of applicable accessibility codes, standards, and regulations. DSA does not have the authority to interpret a specific accessibility standard specific to a facility for the following reasons:
- The primary responsibility for enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act Standards rests with the United States Department of Justice, and through legal action by individuals with disabilities that have faced discrimination based on a construction-related accessibility violation that resulted in a denial of access. DSA and local jurisdictions (building departments) do not have the authority to enforce the ADA on behalf of either the federal government or individuals with disabilities. Therefore, DSA cannot address a complaint by the business owner or third party that challenges the opinion of a CASp where compliance with the ADA Standards is in question.
- Health and Safety Code §19958 grants to the building department of every city or county the authority to interpret and enforce the California Building Code within its territory. Additionally, the California Attorney General has directed every building department in the state to have a complaint procedure in place and to promptly investigate disability access complaints. DSA cannot address complaints by the business owners or third parties challenging the opinion of a CASp where compliance with the CBC is in question. If an individual has an issue with the actual compliance of a facility with the California Building Code accessibility provisions, they would need to file a code violation complaint with the agency having jurisdiction, which is the local building department.