Unlicensed Contracting in Polk County
Law enforcement officers in Polk County, FL, conduct elaborate sting operations to arrest people for unlicensed contracting crimes. In these sting operations, undercover officers pose as homeowners responding to ads on social media sites like Facebook.
During the sting operation, the undercover officer will persuade the person to perform jobs that meet the definition of contracting. Then the officers will arrest the person for engaging in a business as a contractor without a license or failure to secure workers’ compensation insurance coverage.
Florida law prohibits unlicensed contracting crimes including:
- engaging in acting in the capacity of a contractor or advertising himself or herself or a business organization as available to engage in the business or acting in the capacity of a contractor without being duly registered or certified;
- using or attempting to use a certificate or registration that has been suspended or revoked;
- knowingly giving false or forged evidence to the Board or to a Board member;
- presenting another person’s registration or certificate as his or her own;
- falsely impersonating a certificate holder or registrant;
- falsely holding himself or herself or a business organization out as a licensee, certificate holder, or registrant; or
- operating a business organization engaged in contracting after 60 days following the termination of its only qualifying agent without designating another primary qualifying agent, except as provided in ss. 489.119 and 489.1195, F.S.
- commencing work for which a building permit is required under part IV of chapter 553, F.S., without such building permit;
- willfully violating any municipal or county ordinance relating to uncertified or unregistered contractors.
The penalty for committing a crime of unlicensed contracting depends on several factors including the number of prior convictions:
- a first conviction is charged as a first degree misdemeanor;
- a second subsequent conviction is charged as a third degree felony;
- if a person commits a violation during a state of emergency declared by executive order of the Governor, then the crime can be charged as a third degree felony, even for a first offense.
In addition to being charged with a crime for unlicensed contracting, Under Section 455.228, F.S., the DBPR can levy administrative fines of up to $10,000 against an unlicensed person who performs contracting services.
Attorney for Unlicensed Contracting Crimes in Polk County, FL
The attorneys at Sammis Law Firm represent clients throughout Polk County who are charged with a crime for failure to secure workers’ compensation insurance coverage or engaging in a business as a contractor without a license. We understand the way law enforcement officers in Polk County, FL, conduct undercover sting operations.
We are familiar with the tactics used by officers with local law enforcement agencies, the Florida Department of Financial Services Bureau of Workers’ Compensation Compliance, and the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
In Polk County, FL, these charges are aggressively prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office for the 10th Judicial Circuit in Polk County, FL.
We also help clients contest administrative fines being imposed by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR).
Call 813-250-0500 today.
This article was last updated on Friday, March 26, 2021.