SBE News

Capitol Connection #1128


Sorry to say, but sometimes the ‘parts’ don’t add up to the whole ‘experience’. Confused? No wonder its contractor license regulation we are talking about…

Shauna Krause, writer of Capitol Connection

Q:  I would like to explain what my company does and see if you have any advice or an opinion.  I own a business that contracts with vacation home owners to come in after their rentals check out to inspect the place for any damage.  Usually these owners live out of town and their occupants “rent” the property for an extended period of time.  We will come in clean and make any minor repairs.  Some examples are repairing a hole in the wall, minor drywall and paint touch ups, we’ve done door replacements, minor plumbing (such as leaks in the sink), snow shoveling, minor tile repair, etc.  A large majority of what we do does not require a Contractor’s license, or the repairs fall under the $500 rule.  In the instances where we have been asked to perform work that would require a Contractor’s license, we have a circle of contractors that we refer to our clients and they work directly with them.  However, as this is coming up more often, I’m thinking my company should obtain a Contractor’s license so we can take on this work ourselves.  Based on what I’ve described (I’ve done all of this repair work for over 5 years), would I qualify for a Contractor’s license?

A:  As you may know, there are many types of licenses in CA, from General Building, to specialized classifications such as drywall.  In order to qualify for any license, you must document at least four years of full-time work experience in that particular trade. Since you are doing a variety of trades depending on the specific need, you would have a hard time showing four years of full-time experience in any one trade.   

Q:  I’m really confused about an application we have pending with the CSLB.  We are a sole member managed Limited Liability Company (LLC).  Our only Member is a Corporation. The CSLB sent us a form to complete called “Designated Signatory” form.  The form came with a letter stating an individual needed to sign on behalf of our Sole Member (the Corporation).  Does it matter what title this person should hold?  And will this individual have to do fingerprinting and the background check?

A:  The Designated Signatory can be any official Officer or Director of the corporation (Sole Member) that you intend on designating “signing authority” for the license.  The individual you designate does not need to be fingerprinted and go through a background check.  Only the individuals who are direct personnel of the applying entity (the LLC) need to be fingerprinted.


A little bit of ‘sole’ searching for a contractor whose business is booming! More advice for a contractor that should ‘register’ for many of you and we bring ‘light’ to the darkness that ‘eclipses’ some incorrect advice…

Q:  I have a license as a Sole Proprietorship.  I’ve never had an employee so I have “Exemption from Worker’s Comp” on file with the CSLB.  My business has really picked up and I’m going to need to hire one or two people to work for me.  Once I hire people, how do I go about notifying the CSLB?  Any information you can give me to provide to the insurance company would be helpful.

A:  Once you have an insurance policy and employees, you have 90 days to notify the CSLB.  The certificate must be written by an insurance company licensed through the CA Department of Insurance.  It must list the CSLB as the Certificate Holder.  You are required to have your exact business name as the “insured” and your license number must be listed on it.   

Q:  I recently had a customer ask why I didn’t have my license number on my truck.  It is my personal truck that I also use for business.  Am I required to have my license number on it?

A:  B&P Code section 7029.6 states that a licensed contractor with a vehicle used for his or her construction business, for which a commercial vehicleregistrationfee has been paid should have his or her business name and contractor’s license number in a  clearly visible location on the vehicle, in print type of at least 72-point font or three-quarters of an inch in height and width. 

Q:  I’m going to obtain a “C-10” (Electrical) license to do Solar work.  My friend who has his own Electrical license told me I couldn’t use the word “Solar” in my business name. Apparently, he tried to use Solar in his name a couple years ago and the CSLB denied him and had him change his business name.  Is this still true?  It seems strange that the CSLB allows “C-10” contractors to do Solar work, but then they don’t allow you to use that word in your business name?

A:  That is partially correct.  In order to use the word “Solar” in your business name if you are not a “C-46” Solar contractor, you must also use trade/classification “identifiers”, so a word that is directly associated with the classification you hold.  So, in your case, you could use “ABC Electrical Solar”, or “ABC Solar Electrical”. That should light up your life! 

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