General Contractor Defense - The License Lawyers

General Contractor Defense

Contractors are essential to the function of society by having the responsibility of providing the materials, labor, and equipment necessary for construction projects. There are different types of contractors and varying degrees of qualifications. On this page, you can learn more about types of contractors and what to do if your contractor license is in jeopardy. 

Types of Contractors

There are general contractors and specialist contractors that are often hired as subcontractors. Some contractors handle and perform all aspects of the construction projects and sometimes subcontractors handle most of the project. The duties of a contractor also varies so much depending on the location of the job site and the type of project. 

There are also three different types of licenses that a contractor can obtain. There are limited licenses, which qualifies the licensee to be a general contractor for up to $500,000. There are intermediate licenses that allow the licensee to be a general contractor for projects up to $1,000,000. Finally, there are unlimited licenses that allow the holder to be a general contractor for projects of any value and with no limit. 

Facing License Issues

One thing that contractors and subcontractors must be cautious about is the status of the license. The Department of Consumer Protection regulates contractors in Connecticut and requires contractors to renew their licenses annually by the last day of the year. If the license is not renewed, it is considered expired and the license will become invalid after a 60-day grace period. Contractors will face serious legal consequences from the Department of Consumer Protection if they work on any project with an expired or invalid license. 

The Department of Consumer Protection licenses and regulates contractors, which is any person that is engaged in construction, structural repair, alteration, dismantling or demolition. Contractors could also encompass any person that is under the supervision or direction of a contractor and performs work that impacts the structure or repair or demolition of a structure. See C.G.S. §29-276b for a more detailed definition. Contractors must have a valid license to do any work that includes, but is not limited to: structural framework, masonry, roofing, foundations, floors, sheeting, shoring, and underpinning. The Department of Consumer Protection takes licensing requirements extremely seriously because of the risk of serious injury or danger to the public if requirements are not met. 

Facing Allegations

If a contractor performs contracting work with an invalid license or without a license, there are serious repercussions such as monetary penalties, criminal charges, withheld payment for completed work, fines, and loss of license. Besides working with an invalid license, there are other actions that could result in disciplinary action including: 

Negligence in Contracting

Criminal Charges

Drug or Alcohol Abuse

Working While Under the Influence

Failing to Comply With Codes and Regulations

Breaking a Contract or Contract Disputes

Abandoning a Project Before Completion

Unlawful Deposit Receipt

When the Department receives a complaint about a contractor doing something illegal, unethical, or unprofessional on duty or off duty, they take it very seriously. 

Getting Help

Contractors should be careful and hesitant about making statements to any investigator without first consulting with an attorney. Even contractors that are extremely careful and skillful can find themselves fighting against a complaint. Allegations that have merit to them may go forward to an administrative hearing if requested. 

If you are a contractor or subcontractor and have found yourself fighting against a loss of your license or other disciplinary action, it is best to speak with an experienced attorney before making any statements or going in front of an administrative judge. Contact our office today to speak with an attorney who can advise you on what to do. 

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