Construction Contractor’s Be Very Afraid… Your Contractor’s License is At Risk!!

In a recent ruling, the California Appellate Court put a contractor’s license at even more risk of having a public citation. The case…

ACCO Engineered Systems, Inc. v. Contractors' State License Board.

In summary ACCO is large construction contractor who performs work throughout California and in other states.   ACCO has a division that exclusively researches building permit requirements for each project it is working on.  All employees are to confirm the building permits for each project. 

ACCO contracted to install a boiler on a project in California.  The employee in charge of this project acted negligently by not consulting with ACCO’s building permit division.  A formal complaint was filed by the building owner against ACCO’s contractor’s license for their failure to pull a building permit.

The CSLB gave ACCO a $500 fine and a 5 year public citation against its contractor’s license pursuant to Business and Professions Code Section 7110, which provides, in pertinent part, that the “[w]illful or deliberate disregard and violation of the building laws . . . constitutes a cause for disciplinary action.”

ACCO appealed the CSLB’s decision. The Appellate Court agreed with the CSLB.  The Appellate Court, through convoluted reasonings, found ACCO’s actions were deliberate and not negligent. 

The Appellate Court went on to state that but for very limited circumstances every action taken by a contactor that does not 100% comply with the law will be deemed, at a minimum, “deliberate”. 

In construction terms, that means any action you taken that is not 100% correct could put your contractor’s license at risk!!

Plumtree & Associates along with California Association of Specialty Contractors (CALPASC) tried to intervene before this case law became binding by filing an Amicus Brief to the court.  The Amicus Brief asked the court to depublish the case so that it would not be binding or allow the California Supreme Court to review its decision. 

Download The Amicus Brief

Unfortunately, our Amicus Brief did not work persuade the Appellate Court. 

But do not lose faith.  Our firm, along with CALPASC have been successful on other cases.  Plumtree & Associates with CALPASC will continue to monitor construction cases that affect the construction community and construction contractors negatively and take action!!!

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