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What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

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  • What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

    Here is a question I have. I recently passed my test for my B license (general contractor) I did studied the weekend crash course material, and read the actual book that was written for the State of California regarding contractors law.

    My question: For California, I know there are provisions for doing stuff outside of your trade providing it is coincidental and necessary to the work you are licensed to perform. A general can bid on framing, bid on stuff he is not licensed to do providing he hires a subcontractor, and do work that comes in the course of doing his job, like paint, drywall, flooring, etc. I have heard that you are not supposed to do any electrical work at all unless you are a C10, journeyman, apprentice, or enrolled/passed the certification school for electricians, but am unaware of any sort of restrictions on who can doing plumbing. In CA we have a $500 small work exemption where any idiot can do just about anything providing the agregate price of the labor and materials do not exceed $500.

    It is a gray area on what a general can and cannot get away with. I know he cannot bid specific jobs where he is doing only electrical or plumbing, that is a no-no, but he can do electrical and plumbing, paint, drywall etc during the course of his job, for instance a remodel. I am confused. Where does a General Contractors "General scope of work" end?
    We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

  • #2
    Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

    General Building ("B") Contractor
    (B&P 7057)

    2. How is a general building ("B") contractor defined in Contractors License Law?

    Section 7057(a) broadly defines general building contractor as a contractor whose principal business is in connection with any structure built, being built, or to be built, requiring in its construction the use of at least two unrelated building trades or crafts; however, framing or carpentry projects may be performed without limitation. In some instances, a general building contractor may take a contract for projects involving one trade only if the general contractor holds the appropriate specialty license or subcontracts with an appropriately licensed specialty contractor to perform the work.

    Subsections (b) & (c) of section 7057 specifically define the situations in which a "B" contractor may take a prime contract or subcontract.


    3. The last part of the first paragraph of section 7057 states "...or to do or superintend the whole or any part thereof." What does this mean?

    Any projects, or portions thereof, that are identified under section 7057 as appropriate for the "B" General Building classification may be completed by a "B" contractor through the licensee's own forces, and/or by overseeing (superintending) the work of properly licensed subcontractors.

    4. How does the CSLB differentiate between a prime contract and a subcontract?

    A prime contract is a contractual relationship made between the owner of the property and the contractor. A subcontract is when the contractor does not have a direct contractual relationship with the owner of the property. For example, the subcontractor contracts with the prime contractor.

    5. What prime contracts or subcontracts can a "B" contractor take?

    A "B" contractor can take a prime contract or subcontract for:

    framing or carpentry projects; or
    projects that require at least two unrelated building trades other than framing or carpentry (cannot count framing or carpentry as one of the two unrelated trades); or
    any specialty projects (even if less than two unrelated trades) for which the "B" contractor also holds the required specialty class.

    6. Can a "B" contractor take a "prime contract" for a single specialty trade?

    A "B" contractor may take a prime contract for any specialty project (even if less than two trades); if the "B" contractor holds the specialty classification or subcontracts the work to an appropriately licensed specialty contractor.

    7. Can a general building ("B") Contractor take a "subcontract" for work involving a single trade if he plans to sub the work out?

    As provided in B&P section 7057(b), a "B" contractor cannot take any subcontract (a subcontract is when the "B" does not have a direct contractual relation with the owner of property) for any single trade project (excluding framing or carpentry), unless he/she holds the required specialty license classification. For example, a "B" contractor may take a prime contract (contract directly with the owner of the property) to roof a home, then subcontract the work to a licensed roofing contractor. However, a "B" may not take a subcontract to roof a home, then subcontract the work out.

    8. Can a "B" contractor take a contract for fire protection or well drilling work?

    Section 7057 (c) prohibits a "B" contractor from taking a contract for any project that includes work covered under a C-16 (Fire Protection) or C-57 (Well Drilling) classification, unless the "B" contractor either holds the C-16 or C-57 class or subcontracts the work to a properly licensed specialty contractor.

    9. Can a "B" contractor obtain a roofing permit when the work involves replacing facia board, painting eaves and applying a new roof cover?

    If the work is part of an overall general building project, then yes, the "B" contractor could obtain a roofing permit and perform or subcontract the work.
    10. The first paragraph of B&P section 7057 refers to "chattels." What are chattels?

    Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines chattels as: "an item of tangible movable or immovable property except real estate, freehold, and things (as buildings) connected with real property." Example: A tool or equipment shed is a structure that is designed to house "chattels."
    "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

    I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

      B - General Building Contractor

      Business & Professions Code
      Division 3, Chapter 9. Contractors, Article 4. Classifications

      7057. (a) Except as provided in this section, a general building contractor is a contractor whose principal contracting business is in connection with any structure built, being built, or to be built, for the support, shelter, and enclosure of persons, animals, chattels, or movable property of any kind, requiring in its construction the use of at least two unrelated building trades or crafts, or to do or superintend the whole or any part thereof.

      This does not include anyone who merely furnishes materials or supplies under Section 7045 without fabricating them into, or consuming them in the performance of the work of the general building contractor.

      (b) A general building contractor may take a prime contract or a subcontract for a framing or carpentry project. However, a general building contractor shall not take a prime contract for any project involving trades other than framing or carpentry unless the prime contract requires at least two unrelated building trades or crafts other than framing or carpentry, or unless the general building contractor holds the appropriate license classification or subcontracts with an appropriately licensed specialty contractor to perform the work. A general building contractor shall not take a subcontract involving trades other than framing or carpentry, unless the subcontract requires at least two unrelated trades or crafts other than framing or carpentry, or unless the general building contractor holds the appropriate license classification. The general building contractor may not count framing or carpentry in calculating the two unrelated trades necessary in order for the general building contractor to be able to take a prime contract or subcontract for a project involving other trades.

      (c) No general building contractor shall contract for any project that includes the "C-16" Fire Protection classification as provided for in Section 7026.12 or the "C-57" Well Drilling classification as provided for in Section 13750.5 of the Water Code, unless the general building contractor holds the specialty license, or subcontracts with the appropriately licensed specialty contractor.

      (Amended by Stats. 1997, Chapter 812 (SB 857).)
      "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

      I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

        That is what I had read before, and with the electrical hearsay I had heard before, had me confused. It sounds like if you play your cards right you can do almost anything except c16 and C57. It almost makes my wonder why somebody would want to get a specialty license if with a general (with some word manipulation) you can do just about anything you please....

        This phrase makes me wonder. "A general building contractor shall not take a subcontract involving trades other than framing or carpentry, unless the subcontract requires at least two unrelated trades or crafts other than framing or carpentry,"

        This phrase makes it sound like I can do framing, plumbing, insulation, concrete work, elevators or whatever I can dream of using that clause. Not that I would want to do some of those trades, esp. seeing how I know NOTHING about elevators, steam, building moving etc.


        Where is the line drawn? (aside from wells and fire protection) Is this why they make you have a 12.5K bond so when you screw up there is not enough money to go around? LOL, I am sure if I were to go to court there is a very clear precedent on what is allowed, but I otherwise am appearing to miss the point.
        Last edited by masterbeavis; 09-15-2011, 11:50 PM.
        We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

          I would not call it a gray area at all. However it is abused by many. I received my B license in the mid 80's. We had a crew of 40+ guys working for us. I had framers, finish carpenters, plumbers, drywall guys, lath and stucco guys and laborers. The only thing we didn't have was roofers and electricians but I could have had those as well. The key is you have to supervise your work and use guys who were skilled in their trade.

          Mark
          "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

          I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

            Originally posted by masterbeavis View Post
            That is what I had read before, and with the electrical hearsay I had heard before, had me confused. It sounds like if you play your cards right you can do almost anything except c16 and C57. It almost makes my wonder why somebody would want to get a specialty license if with a general (with some word manipulation) you can do just about anything you please....

            This phrase makes me wonder. "A general building contractor shall not take a subcontract involving trades other than framing or carpentry, unless the subcontract requires at least two unrelated trades or crafts other than framing or carpentry,"

            This phrase makes it sound like I can do framing, plumbing, insulation, concrete work, elevators or whatever I can dream of using that clause. Not that I would want to do some of those trades, esp. seeing how I know NOTHING about elevators, steam, building moving etc.


            Where is the line drawn? (aside from wells and fire protection) Is this why they make you have a 12.5K bond so when you screw up there is not enough money to go around? LOL, I am sure if I were to go to court there is a very clear precedent on what is allowed, but I otherwise am appearing to miss the point.
            There are certain Jurisdictions which will not allow you to do plumbing or electrical on a B license. That is a local amendment to their building code.

            With a B license you can do carpentry by itself or anything else except for wells and fire protection as long as you do carpentry and two other non-related trades. I believe my Bond in Nevada is $20,000 but costs about 4X what my California Bond costs.

            Mark
            "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

            I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: What does your license allow you to do that is not specific to it?

              My license allows me to do what I'm licensed to do.Plumbing , gasfitting, drain cleaning.I don't do anything out of my realm of expertise
              ''Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy" Benjamin Franklin

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