Filing a CSLB Complaint, Bond Advertising, Drywall Waiver and AZ License Change Update

While we are the experts on contractor’s licensing even I can’t explain some of the rules on the book.  I ‘sign’ on this time with a ‘specialized’ question that has no answer! …

Q:  What makes plumbers, electrical sign contractors and well drillers so special that they require additional license displays (name, address, license, bigger lettering) when advertising than a “normal” contractor?

Also, why are contractors not allowed to advertise about being bonded?  That seems to be something that a customer would want to know.

A:  Thank you for contacting Capitol Services.  I don’t know that you will ever find an answer for your first question regarding Plumbers (“C-36”), Electrical Signs (“C-45”), and Well drillers (“C-57”). The CSLB has some rules and regulations that are not easily explained, but still the law of the land.

Regarding your second question, the CSLB prohibits contractors from advertising that they are bonded because it could lead the public to believe there is a higher level of protection than might actually be the case. Hope this helps.

Q:  I am a fire/water restoration contractor with a “B” (General Building) license.  I have enough drywall work to start a separate business that strictly does drywall.  If I wanted to add the drywall classification to my license would I be required to take the exam?

A:  Being that drywall is a significant portion of the “B” work that you are doing you can request a waiver of the trade exam.  It is not guaranteed that the waiver will be granted. The CSLB will review your work experience and expect to see at least 4 years of experience doing specifically drywall work and make a determination.  Contact our office if you’re a reader with questions or need further assistance with a waiver.


Q:  How long after a job is complete does a person have to file a complaint?

A:  The CSLB has jurisdiction for up to four years from the date of an illegal act for patent defects and up to 10 years for latent “structural” defects.  For unlicensed contractors, the CSLB has jurisdiction for up to four years from the date of the illegal act.

Q:  I am an attorney and one of my clients who is licensed in many States is going to be applying for a California contractor’s license (and yes, I will be sending him to you!)  I know each State is different with regards to dba or ‘doing business as’ names and whether or not they can have a corporate ending such as “Inc” or “Incorporated”.  What is the rule for that in CA?  For example, can his company name be ABC Contracting Services Inc. dba John Smith Contracting Services Inc.?


A:  The CSLB’s rule for corporate endings on a dba name is that if the dba name is registered with the county then he can have a corporate ending on it.  If it is not registered with the county, then he is not permitted to include a corporate ending on the dba name.  I look forward to assisting him with obtaining his CA license and thanks for the compliment!

 Attention Arizona licensees:

Rule changes effective July 1, 2014 increased nearly all bond amounts to provide additional protection for homeowners and licensees injured by a licensee.  These changes will become effective upon the licensee’s renewal.

Also, the Arizona Registrar Of Contractors (ROC) will no longer be sending out renewal notices by mail.  In order to reduce costs, they will now be sending out renewal notices by the email listed with the Registrar.  Make sure that emails, from are not blocked by your spam filter!  If no email address is on file then you will continue to receive the notices by mail.

As we have advised in many past columns, keeping your contact information up to date is absolutely crucial as paperwork or notices will not be forwarded.  Simply filing a postal change of address may not be adequate, so let them know directly you have moved and they have your exact mailing address.