Expired Licenses, Joint Ventures & Waivers

One of the best weapons in my arsenal of contractor assistance is simple. I’m here in Sacramento. I can go directly to the ‘source’ while contractors often are too far away or busy to carry their paperwork into CSLB Headquarters. In some cases, contractor’s license concerns won’t be satisfied no matter where they ‘stand’ in line…

Q: I never received my renewal in the mail. Do you have any idea when the Contractors Board would have sent this out? Assuming it was more than a few weeks ago, would you be able to pick up a renewal for my company? I don’t want to take any chances that the license may expire.

A: Normally, the CSLB sends license renewals between 60 and 75 days prior to expiration. In your case, it appears the renewal application went out about two weeks ago. You can call the Board and order a replacement or I can go to CSLB headquarters and pick one up on your behalf.

Since the Postal Service generally does not forward renewal applications, be sure to notify the CSLB immediately if you have moved or changed your mailing address.

Q: Thank you for reviewing the application for adding an additional “C” class. Your email response stated that Jim would be required to sit for the exam. Are you sure? Or can we ask for a waiver so he does not need to take the test?

A: You can always submit a waiver request in writing; however, based on the information I reviewed, it would appear he would need to take the exam. I think you’re hoping the CSLB would allow for the waiver under B&P Section 7065.3. Unfortunately, with the classification Jim presently holds (“C-6” Cabinets), there is no way the CSLB will waive the painting (“C-33”) test. Even under the best of circumstances, the Board is granting few waiver requests for additional classifications.

Q: Our Company wants to apply for a Joint Venture (JV) license along with two other corporations. If I recall from the last time we spoke, you said all parties must be licensed. One company does not have a license yet. Is there any way around this?

A: There is no way around this requirement. All Joint Venture “partners” must be licensed and in good ‘standing’. Not only must they have a license but also it cannot be expired or suspended for any reason. This third entity will need to first file an Application for Original License and once it is issued you can submit an Application for a Joint Venture.

Q: I’m a homeowner and hired a contractor to perform some roofing work. The job ended up being $7000 but I’m not very happy with the results. I paid over $4000 up front then another $2300. I refuse to pay the remainder until he fixes the problem. The contractor has threatened to put a lien on my property. He doesn’t have a “C-39” license – only a “B”. My question: Is he working outside of his classification and do you think I’ll get a ruling in my favor if I go to court?

A: I would never presume to guess what a court or judge would rule on any given matter. However, I’m aware of cases where a contractor appeared to be operating outside their classification only to see the judge rule in his favor. Based on the stated facts, the contractor does not appear to have the correct license. To perform roofing ONLY on a given project, a General Building contractor should either hold a “C-39” classification or hire a licensed “C-39” subcontractor. Also, as required by law, your contractor should only have taken a down payment of 10%, not 57% of the contract price.