Can You Hire an Unlicensed Contractor in FL?
Can you hire an unlicensed fence contractor in Florida? All fencing contractors in Florida must be licensed. In Sarasota County, Building and Licensing Enforcement officials are required to ensure that all fencing contractors are licensed and issue citations for unlicensed work. Hiring an unlicensed contractor of any type in Florida can result in civil penalties, hefty fines, and liability for any damage caused by the contractor’s work. Not only is unlicensed and unpermitted construction illegal in Sarasota County, but it can also end up costing you much more than the contractor’s initial estimate. If you hire a fencing contractor without a license, you could be responsible for:
An unlicensed contractor can sue you for the cost of the medical bills, missed work, and punitive damages if injured while working on your property’s fencing. This can add thousands of dollars to the project’s expenses, far surpassing the cost of hiring a reputable, licensed contractor. Liability for injury to any of the contractor’s assistants is also yours, as well as any injuries sustained by others because of the contractor’s negligence. Licensed contractors carry bonds, insurance, and worker’s compensation coverage to handle these situations; an unlicensed contractor is unlikely to have any of these safeguards in place.
An unlicensed contractor has no obligation to repair anything they damage, whether it belongs to you, your neighbor, or someone else. Damage to your own or neighboring properties due to the unlicensed contractor’s negligence will be your responsibility. Just like with injuries, damage claims can add thousands to your fencing project cost.
Poor Quality Work
If the work performed by an unlicensed contractor is subpar, it could actually decrease your property’s value. A leaning, unstable fence is a safety hazard that any potential buyer will have to pay to remove. No matter how much you spend on the fencing material, improper installation will ruin the project and can cost thousands to repair. If the contractor was unlicensed, you’ll have no recourse to get them to repair their shoddy work.
Reporting an unlicensed contractor to Building & Licensing Enforcement will do no good since they do not possess a license to suspend or revoke. You can sue the contractor in civil court, but after the time and cost are considered, you may still end up in a hole. Hire a reputable, licensed fencing contractor from the beginning and save yourself from some serious headaches later on. At West Florida Fence, we are fully licensed, insured, and bonded as required by Sarasota County and Florida state law. We specialize in commercial fencing projects big and small. Call us at (813) 213-3297 today for a safe and attractive fencing solution for your business.