AZ Trade Waiver, Payroll Companies and National Licensing

Did you hear about nationwide licensing contractors? Our second contractor discovers there is a ‘payoff’ in his issue while another gets a ‘time’ saver…

Q: I would like to inquire about Nationwide licensing. We provide products related to surface water management throughout the US (mostly in the West) and frequently are asked to help with the installation of our products. Is there some sort of blanket license which would cover us? I live in Arizona, but I travel out of State to provide materials, equipment, and perform other tasks. If there is no blanket license, is it possible to work under a General Contractor’s license as a 1099 employee to do the installs?

A:  There is no Nationwide contractor’s license. Each State has their own requirements and their own license process if the State even requires a 

contractor’s license at all (some don’t!). I can only call myself an expert on licensing for CA, NV, and AZ and for those three States it is not permissible to work as a 1099 employee under a General Contractor without a license. CA, NV, and AZ require that you either be employed by the license holder as a W-2 employee, or if you are independent, you need your own contractor’s license.

Q: We are researching an option of creating a new entity which would be payroll company used for the purpose of leasing employees to our licensed entities (we have three). The licensed entities have Responsible Managing Officers (RMO) attached. Would the payroll company need to obtain a CSLB license? Can the RMOs be transferred to the new payroll company as employees and maintain their corporate Officer role in the licensed entity without causing any licensing issues?

A: No, the payroll company would not be required to obtain a contractor’s license as long as it’s not entering into any contracts. And yes, I don’t see any issues (from a licensing perspective) with transferring the Officers to the payroll entity as employees. As long as they remain Officers of the license holding entities, there should be no contractor’s license disruption.

Q: Our CA contractor license was issued last month and our current California RME will also serve as our Arizona RME. I believe that he has already taken and passed the AZ statutes and rules exam. Will he need to sit for an AZ trade-specific exam, or will he be able to request a waiver in Arizona because he recently sat for and passed the CA trade-specific exam? Is there any time constraint on the amount of time that an RME must serve in CA in order to obtain the waiver for the trade-specific exam in Arizona? 

A: No time constraint for that actually! As long as the license has been active for at least one day in California, he will qualify for a waiver of the trade portion of the Arizona exam.