SBE News

Capitol Connection #1009

‘Services’ is what we provide from our offices in the CA capital, although that same word can become a ‘disservice’ when included in a contractor’s business name. I am ‘floored’ by your compliments and appreciate the question! Finally, a solution for a contractor spanning the country ‘coast to coast’…

Q: We have a pending application with the CSLB and we are in a huge hurry to get the license (as I’m sure every applicant is). Our business name has the word “Services” in it and we received a rejection letter from the CSLB requiring that we add a “doing business as, or dba”. After doing some searching, I came across several of your articles about how the CSLB is no longer allowing the generic word “Services” unless it is preceded by a descriptive word in relation to the trade you are applying for. Is the CSLB going to further request proof that our “dba” name is registered with the County? Since we want to expedite this, I just want to think ahead and prevent any more rejections.

A: While I would recommend registering your “dba” with the County as soon as you can, in all the years we have been dealing with the CSLB, we have never seen them ask for proof of “dba” registration with the County.

Q: I work for a local Builders Exchange and, first of all we appreciate your weekly articles about contractor licensing. Thank you for passing your knowledge along. One of my member companies told me today that they think their “B” (General Building) license covers the “C-15” (Flooring) specialty. Is that true?

A: Thank you for contacting us, I’m glad you enjoy the articles. The “B” covers everything it takes to build a structure from the ground up, however the key is “B” Contractors must be performing at least two unrelated trades on any one job. This being said, a “B” contractor can do flooring as long as he/she is doing at least one other trade on the same job unrelated to flooring. “B” contractors are not permitted to do a strictly flooring job. They do have the option of signing a flooring contract and then sub-contracting the job out to a properly licensed “C-15” contractor.

Q: I am a Contractor in New York and we’d like to get licensed in California to do Solar work. There is not a specific license for Solar in New York so I have a General Contractor’s license here. I understand Solar is a much bigger industry in California, so is there a different license we would need to obtain or would it still be a General Building license? I have 15 years of experience doing General Construction, and not as much experience with Solar so the exam worries me a bit. What do you recommend?

A: Regardless of what classification you apply for you will need to document at least four years of full time work experience in the trade. It sounds as if the majority of your work experience is in the General Building field, so I would recommend applying for the “B” CA license. “B” contractors are required to perform at least two unrelated trades on each job and because the CSLB has determined Solar work entails at least two unrelated trades, “B” Contractors are permitted to perform solar work.

By Shauna Krause, President, Capitol Services, Inc.

While knowledge is power, knowing where to go for the answers is half the battle. Get expert assistance immediately when you call 866-443-0657, email, or write us at Capitol Services, Inc., 1225 8th St. Ste. 500, Sacramento, CA 95814. Research past columns at