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Motorboatin' son of a ...
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In 2010, unlicensed contractors are in store for tougher penalties.
Starting Jan. 1, those caught contracting in California without a license for the first time will face six months in jail or a fine of up to $5,000 because of a new law that will take affect. Right now the offense is only considered a misdemeanor with no set jail time or penalties.

Second-timers must pay 20 percent of the contract price, or $5,000, whichever is greater and spend at least 90 days in county jail. A third offense would be punishable with 90 days to one year in a county jail and a fine between $5,000 and $10,000, or 20 percent of the contract price, according to the law, Assembly Bill 370.

Anyone who uses an unlicensed contractor is a victim and is entitled to a refund, regardless of whether they knew the contractor was unlicensed, according to state law.

OCRegister
 

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That should cut down on hacks and illegals. Wish we had something like that in SC.:thumbsup:
 

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I own stock in FotoMat!
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Having laws on the books is only 'bark'.

Hopefully, there will be enforcement to put the 'bite' into it.
 

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True. Its just a threat of penalty if an unlicensed contractor is caught, but it is a start.

Here if a hack is in the middle of a job and the codes official comes up, all they do is put a stop work on the job and the HO pays a little fine (double cost of the permit) and has to find a qualified contractor to finish the job. I've had to go in more than once to finish up work that was started illegaly. Sometimes behind a true hack :rolleyes: and sometimes behind a good carpenter that just didn't have a license. Either way I don't feel sorry for the HO for not getting a (lic.) contractor to start with.
I do think the hack that took the job should have to pay some consequences.
 

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Project Manager HFH..
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Well my experience is that government intrusion rarely, if ever, results in a purely benificial involvment. I'm sure that IRS, EPA, DEA, OSHA, etc etc all seemed like great ideas too. More laws, more rules, more intrusion mean more cost to everyone..for everything.
It has been against the law to contract without a license for a long time here in California.Now if they enforce these new penalties or not is the million dollar question.

It is against the law to employ illegals but the government does nothing about it.
 

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Project Manager HFH..
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Well my experience is that government intrusion rarely, if ever, results in a purely benificial involvment. I'm sure that IRS, EPA, DEA, OSHA, etc etc all seemed like great ideas too. More laws, more rules, more intrusion mean more cost to everyone..for everything.
Yeah like socialized health care.
 

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General Contractor
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Well my experience is that government intrusion rarely, if ever, results in a purely benificial involvment. I'm sure that IRS, EPA, DEA, OSHA, etc etc all seemed like great ideas too. More laws, more rules, more intrusion mean more cost to everyone..for everything.
If we want Big Government to step in and "fix" everything for us, someone has to pay the Big Bills for it. And that somehow seems to always be the hard working, tax paying, law abiding citizens... no matter WHAT laws get passed.
 
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Exactly...the california laws encourages home owners to seek out unlicensed contractors now so they can get the work done, turn in the contractor then not have to pay for the work....they should be in a cell with the illegal worker.
 

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Pompass Ass
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Exactly...the california laws encourages home owners to seek out unlicensed contractors now so they can get the work done, turn in the contractor then not have to pay for the work....they should be in a cell with the illegal worker.
The way the laws are written in Florida, unlicensed contractors have no right to sue or lein the property.
 

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Unfortunately, many people call themselves "contractors" but are really not. some rules and enforcement would help the legitimate contractors.

If you look at many of the posts on this forum, they should really be on a DIY forum where the DIYers ask more intellegent and meaningful questions regarding the right (and not neccessarily the cheapest) price to charge. No contractor should have to ask someone on a forum what to charge when providing skimpy infenormation.
 

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So this law basically means a homeowner can still knowingly hire an unlicensed contractor, have them do the work and be happy with the work, then have an excuse not to pay the guy? Now dont get me wrong, no one should be doing unlicensed work but guys do and they get hired.

What would really change things is if a homeowner got jail time and a fine and if it was really enforced.

The only way to get rid of unlicensed contractors is to punish the people who use them.

If everyone was scared to use an unlicensed contractor for fear of jail time, unlicensed contractors would either need to get a license or get into a new line of work. The competition would probably decrease by about 65 percent and prices would be much more even across the board.
 

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Maker of fine kindling
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I love to see that there is at least some effort to crack down on the unlicensed contractors. Hip hip huray :clap:

Unfortunately every jail house in this state is bursting at the seams as it is and some 40,000 inmates will be released early sometime soon because of all the budget problems related to housing them.

So looking forward and using all our wisdom, what type of crime do you think will be getting priority for jail time? My guess is that it will not be Jethro with his 84 F150 and Riobi skill saw building a deck off the back of your neighbors house. But that is just my guess, what is yours?

As far as the fine goes, great. :thumbsup: So long as they can collect it and use that money to put more enforcement boots on the ground.
 
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All the goverment would have to do is hang out at Home Depot for a week , that would round up quite a few illegal's and unlicensed contractors.....:rolleyes:

2010 is gonna be a rough rough ride in my work area, I am a positive upbeat business guy but when 99% of your fellow contractors both legal and illegal is working for 1992 prices its hard to be excited......

Obama's next big fix is Amemesty for 20 million illegals and there families, that will help fix the economy and drive up wages.....
:sad:
 
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