Electronic Submission FAQs
Below is a list of the most Frequently Asked Questions about mandatory electronic submission of applications, electronic review of applications and the issuance of building permits, as well as electronic signatures and stamps.
What is Electronic Plan Review?
Toronto Building has an electronic plan review process. As a result, permit applications are processed electronically. If an application is approved, the permit will be issued in PDF format and sent to the applicant in an electronic format.
The applicant must print the documents and drawings which form the Building Permit and keep them on the construction site.
Will All Applications be Reviewed and Issued Electronically?
No. Permits related to projects applied for prior to November 12, 2012, will still be processed and issued on paper. For example, mechanical, plumbing and conditional permits that are part of a project applied for before the date noted above will still be issued on paper.
Are FASTRACK Permits Issued Electronically?
Yes, all new FASTRACK projects will be issued electronically.
Do I Still Have to Submit a Paper Set of Drawings?
Yes, one reference set of drawings is still required in addition to the electronic submission package.
Are the Reference Drawings a Full-Scale or Reduced-Scale Set?
The reference set of drawings is a full-scale set.
How Will my Permit be Delivered?
Your permit will be issued in PDF format via email. If the permit package is less then 10MB, it will be attached to the email sent to the Applicant, provided all the fees have been paid. If the permit package is greater than 10MB, a secure link will be included in the email to the applicant to allow the permit package to be downloaded.
What do I do with the PDF Package After I Receive it?
The permit placard, drawings and supporting documents must be printed (full-sized and in colour) and kept on site for the Inspector. The permit placard must be displayed in a conspicuous place on the construction site.
When is a Paper Submission of Documents Acceptable?
FASTRACK applications must be submitted electronically. However, in some cases, documents such as forms, reports, specifications and calculations will be acceptable, but only if they have a maximum dimension of 11″ X 17″.
Do I Need to Apply in Person with Paper Copies?
You can email your application if it is eligible. Check our Detailed Email Submission page to see which applications are eligible. Otherwise, you need to apply in person at the Building Department.
For in-person applications, all forms, reports, specifications, calculations, plans and drawings must be submitted electronically on a re-writable DVD or USB drive. One set of full-scale paper drawings is required until the transition to full electronic processing is complete.
I don't have an Electronic Copy of my Drawings. How can I Submit Them?
All applicants including homeowners are required to provide the required information electronically on a rewritable DVD or USB drive. Applications that do not meet the submission guidelines will not be accepted.
If you do not have an electronic copy, you can either request an electronic copy from the designer or have the drawings scanned at a copy centre.
Will Toronto Building Scan the Required Documents for me?
Toronto Building will only scan 11″ X 17″ drawings submitted as part of a FASTRACK application.
When an additional form is required to be filled out at the counter, the completed form will be scanned by Toronto Building staff.
Applications with multiple forms or drawings missing from the DVD or USB drive will not be scanned by Toronto Building staff.
Are Scanned Copies of Hand-Drawn Plans Acceptable?
Yes, they are acceptable, as long as they are scanned at a sufficient resolution (300 dpi in general, 600 dpi where necessary for fine details), and meet all other submission requirements.
Do Applications for Other Services need to be Submitted Electronically?
An electronic copy of the form is required to be submitted on a re-writable DVD or USB drive. However, because it is only one form, exceptions can be made to accept a hard copy. A paper copy can be filled out at the counter and Toronto Building staff will scan the completed form.
Is Electronic Submission Required for Backwater Valve and a Backflow Preventer?
Electronic submission is required for a backwater valve and backflow preventer. Backflow Prevention Information Templates can be found on the Toronto Building’s Form Page.
What is a Digital Signature?
A digital signature (standard electronic signature) takes the concept of traditional paper-based signing and turns it into an electronic “fingerprint.” This “fingerprint” is unique to both the document and the signer, and binds both of them together.
The digital signature ensures the authenticity of the signer. Any changes made to the document after it is signed invalidate the signature, thereby protecting against forgery and information tampering.
Can I Still Sign Forms by Hand?
The owner can print and sign the form, and then scan it. Please ensure that the information on the form is accurate and the description is acceptable so that the scanned form can be submitted.
How Can I Send a Form that Requires Multiple Signatures on to the Next Company?
Adobe Reader X is required for forms that need multiple electronic signatures.
Are the Stamped and Signed Drawings to be Scanned and Submitted?
Unless drawings are manually drafted, scanning should be avoided as quality suffers and the size of the file increases.
For these reasons, it is preferable that the BCIN stamp and signature be incorporated into the electronic drawings. Adobe PDF-creation software can be used to create custom stamps.