RME/RMO, Section 7031 & Contractor Expert Witness

When you need something quickly do you expect to get it from a government agency? We find ourselves ‘standing up’ for a contractor who needs some ‘active’ defense in keeping his license. We offer an ‘expert’ opinion for a lawyer, and help everyone learn more about RMO/RME requirements in CA…

Q:  Is there any way to get the CSLB to issue an opinion – quickly – whether a license is needed for a particular kind of very specialized work?   It looks like a gray area to me, so I am trying to provide our client with options, which at this point would seem to be either get a license or get CSLB to say that one is not required.  What information do you (and the Board) need from us?
A:  To secure a response – quickly or otherwise — from the CSLB we’ll need to know very specifically what work your client will be performing.  It has been our experience over the years that even if only a small portion of the project involves actual construction a company is required to hold a contractor’s license.  Let us know if you or your client would like us to move forward on this request.

Q:  I have a case where a client of ours is being sued.  I know the statutes basically require that the contractor be able to prove that their license is active and good standing during the time the work was being performed.  Can you get us that proof in a hurry?  We have a court case due to start in less than a month.

A:  You’re referring to B&P Code Section 7031 (d), which states that if there is a dispute regarding the status of a contractor’s license, then “proof of licensure pursuant to this section shall be made by production of a verified certificate of licensure from the Contractors State License Board…”  We can help you secure this Certified License History and, inasmuch as you have an upcoming court date, should have it in hand well before the start of your hearing.

Q: I know I’ve read this in one of your prior columns, but could you remind me if my license number needs to be included on an informal bid.  I was asked to give someone a quote on a small bathroom remodel and wanted to keep it simple.

A:  A license number should be included on all construction contracts, subcontracts and BIDS as well as all forms of advertising. It’s not a big deal why not just list the number?

Q: I read your column regularly and don’t recall seeing any questions regarding expert witness.  I would like to consider retaining someone on behalf of my client.  Is this something you have done before or do you know anyone who can act in this capacity?

A:  I have personally served as an expert witness on numerous court cases, mediations, arbitrations, etc.  I also know other experts that may be able to assist you and your client. It all depends on the exact situation call me to discuss the specifics.

Q:  I am applying for a new corporate license and I am trying to determine whether I should apply as an RME or RMO (Responsible Managing Employee or Officer).  I am a Vice President, but don’t have any ownership or salary at the present time.  Are there any requirements that state that an RMO has to have ownership, and are there any salary requirements for an RMO?

A: An RMO means that your title with the company is President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Director or a related position.  The CSLB does not have any ownership or salary requirements for Officers as RMO’s however you are responsible for exercising DIRECT supervision and control over the company’s construction operations.