Contracting Without a License
In Florida, it is a criminal offense to engage in contracting work or to otherwise act in the capacity of a contractor without a valid Florida contractor’s license. Section 489.127, Florida Statutes. Contracting without a license in Florida is a serious criminal offense and can be charged either as a misdemeanor or felony. Classification depends on the existence of any prior convictions for unlicensed contracting and whether the contracting occurred during a “state of emergency.”
The business of “contracting” includes:
- General Contractor
- Building Contractor
- Residential Contractor
- Sheet Metal Contractor
- Roofing Contractor
- Class A Air Conditioning Contractor
- Class B Air Conditioning Contractor
- Class C Air Conditioning Contractor
- Mechanical Contractor
- Commercial Pool / Spa Contractor
- Residential Pool / Spa Contractor
- Swimming Pool / Spa Servicing Contractor
- Plumbing Contractor
- Underground Utility and Excavation Contractor
- Solar Contractor
- Pollutant Storage Systems Contractor
- Specialty Contractor (Electrical Contractor; Alarm System Contractor; Certified Alarm System Contractor)
The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation routinely conducts sting operations in South Florida targeting unlicensed contractors. The Department works with local law enforcement agencies and the subjects of their investigations usually surface as a result of reviewing advertisements for professional services (local newspapers, Craig’s List) which require a State of Florida license. Individuals believed to be conducting business without a license will usually receive a cease and desist notice from The Department and will have their cases forwarded to the local state attorney’s office for potential prosecution.
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation licenses and regulates more than one million businesses and professionals ranging from hotels and restaurants, real-estate agents and certified public accountants to veterinarians, contractors and cosmetologists.WHAT YOU CAN DO
If you have been accused of unlicensed contracting (contracting without a license) in Palm Beach or Broward County, contact one of our South Florida Criminal Attorneys for a free consultation. There may be a variety of defenses to the charge of Unlicensed Contracting. The outcome your case will depend on a variety of factors including, but not limited to, your criminal history (or lack thereof), the amount of money involved and your ability to repay or make restitution. A “diversion” program may also be an available option which could result in dismissal of your charges. Alternatively, one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys can often negotiate a resolution that involves no conviction (a withholding of adjudication) and a period of probation necessary to make restitution.
At Leifert & Leifert, an Unlicensed Contractor Defense lawyer will provide you with the defense necessary to obtain the best possible outcome. Our attorneys are former prosecutors in both Broward County and Palm Beach County and have the experience necessary to defend you against an allegation of Unlicensed Contracting. Call us today to schedule your free consultation.