This myth is just Myth 2 in a different form. But to further explain, let's look at a typical design process.
Assume your company, "A", has developed a new process and contracts with an engineering firm, "B", to provide the final design. The first thing that is needed is the design basis. Company "B" will ask "A" to provide that basis, or to answer questions that will help define the basis. The information that is provided will be based on results of the research and development program conducted by your company (by you). Your company may also provide results of preliminary design studies conducted by your company (by you). The information provided will most likely mean that the engineering company won't be involved in making many of the design decisions, such as reactor type, pressures and temperatures.
It should be clear from the above scenario that research and development work done by engineers in "A" will affect the design of the plant. Thus, the engineering firm can't shoulder all of the responsibility for the safety of the final design. The state regulators know this too and therefore they expect all engineering work to be done by, or directly supervised by a professional, licensed engineer.
Requiring "B" to review the design basis data and reports provided by "A" does not satisfy the law. Every document related to a design, including reports from "A", must be stamped by the professional engineer in responsible charge of that specific work. Again using Oklahoma law as an example (OK Administrative Code Title 245),
"The intent of the law shall not be met if an unlicensed person independently performs engineering work, to then be reviewed, signed and sealed by a professional engineer. An unlicensed person may only be used if the professional engineer is personally directing the unlicensed person and the work is performed concurrent with the supervision." (Underlines are by me.)
Clearly, you may conduct your engineering work in company "A" without a license, but you have to be directly supervised by a licensed professional engineer. If that is not the case, then both you and your company are probably not in compliance with the law and are subject to fines and penalties. And, as I stated in the previous blog, the requirement that a direct supervisor have a PE license can have a major impact on promotion potential. Basically, without a PE license, you can't be legally in charge of unlicensed "engineers.