Architects Beware – You Better Be Licensed In The Project Location, Even If It’s Foreign Soil
By: Lawrence M. Prosen, K&L Gates, Washington, D.C.
Sturdza v. United Arab Emirates, 11 A.3d 251 (D.C. 2011)
In a case of first impression in the District of Columbia (“D.C.”), an Architect has been barred from recovering fees for architectural services in the District of Columbia where the architect lacked a license to practice in D.C. when it negotiated terms for a services contract. This bar was upheld even where (a) the architect was licensed in another jurisdiction; and (b) the project was actually on “foreign soil” in that it was for the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) located in the United States.