Sole Proprietor to Corporate License

If you give your license number to a corporation can you ever get it back? Even attorneys seem confused about this issue. Another contractor needs renewals in two states and an out-of-state builder has a ‘short’ question about certifying electricians in California…

Q: My boss wants me to take care of renewing our Contractor License in CA. and NV. Will he need to take a test? Please Advise. Thank You.

A: Your boss will not be required to re-test to renew his license. In both States the company is required to complete the state-issued renewal form and submit to the Contractors Board with the proper signatures and fee. In most instances this means the qualifying individual and owner (or company officer). Since it may take several weeks for the renewal to be processed, I highly recommend filing both renewals as early as possible prior to the expiration date.

Q: I am calling on behalf of my client. About 8 years ago, he assigned his sole owner license to his corporation but now wants it back. Is there any way he can get this back in his name?

A: In researching your client’s licensing history, it appears he did NOT assign his sole owner license to the corporation. His personal license simply expired. In order to get his license back (Active), your client will need to file an application for Original License, pay the required fees and post a new Contractors Bond. It is also advisable to write a short letter officially requesting his old license number. Had he opted to re-assign his license to the company, the CSLB would NOT re-issue it under any circumstances.

Q: We’re an out-of-state “A” contractor that worked on a variety of transportation projects in California a decade ago. A portion of these projects involved electrical work however our employees were not certified or licensed. No one objected. We now have an opportunity to handle the same type of work using the same electricians but they are still unlicensed.

Our management team raised a number of questions and it appears you’re the person to ask on this type of issue. If necessary, we are prepared to seek expert legal advice and would appreciate a recommendation for an attorney in CA.

First, can we self-perform the electrical portion of this project; second how do the DAS regulations impact our employees? I would appreciate your calling me to discuss our needs. Thank you in advance for your help.

A: As we discussed, it appears your primary question relates to the Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS), which handles the certification of electricians in CA. This program (linked at, which was established several years ago, was not in effect when you first worked in CA. Nevertheless, it does not impact your company since only Electricians who work for a contractor with a class “C-10” license are covered by this requirement. As an “A” contractor your employees are not required to go through the certification process.

Regarding your initial question, as an “A” contractor you can self perform the electrical portion of this transportation job. In most cases, general engineering contractors can handle the entire project or any portion of an “A” contract.