New processes, additional paperwork, certifications and more changes in regulation and licensing were top of the agenda as I recently attended a CSLB Board meeting. As a spike in rejected license applications shows it pays to have help when making the decision to apply, especially if time is a critical issue…
For those currently applying for a contractor’s license or considering obtaining a license, the CSLB addressed a new procedure recently instituted by the licensing division that has been causing some questions and concerns. In the past applicants applying for a new license provided a Certification of Work Experience page (which is included in the license application package) in order to verify their four years of trade experience. California Code of Regulations (CCR) 824 requires the CSLB to conduct a formal field investigation of a minimum of 3 percent of all applications. In the past investigations were conducted by the enforcement committee at the CSLB and this practice would normally delay the processing of the application by several months.
In order to prevent applications being delayed, the CSLB has begun requesting “Additional Experience Verification” within the licensing division. It seems as if this Additional Experience Verification is requested more often than before, and most frequently from applicants applying for what the CSLB considers “critical classifications”, which include the “A” (General Engineering), “B” (General Building), “C-10”(Electrical), and “C-36” (Plumbing) classifications. When additional verification is requested applicants are given a list of acceptable documentation that may be submitted in order to support the applicant’s claimed experience. Acceptable documentation includes things such as W-2’s, pay stubs, permits, contracts, etc. Coming up with this sort of documentation has proved to be very difficult for applicants who gained their experience “illegally,” and who possibly did work “under the table” without pulling permits or creating contracts. Be aware though, if this additional documentation is not provided within the allotted time frame the application will become Void.
Another noteworthy topic at the CSLB’s meeting was further details on how the Enforcement Unit continues to crack down on unlicensed activity. Many recent cases have resulted in jail sentences, felonies, and restitution payments for unlicensed contractors.
Additionally, the CSLB continues to seek out and partner with other State agencies to battle the underground economy. Currently they are trying out a pilot program with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in which, if you are pulled over on a traffic violation and show signs of being “out on the job” (such as a truck full of construction materials), the officer may ask you for proof of a contractor’s license.
It is also worth mentioning that he licensing division reported over half of all license applications have been rejected since April 2013!! In the month of July alone, 61% of license applications were rejected. In order to prevent application delays it is important that the application is filled out correctly and completely. Application assistance is one of the primary services we’ve provided for more than 30 years. Keep in mind that Capitol Services is here to help, providing expert consultation and application assistance with the goal to get the application accepted the first time around!