construction law

NEW LAWS FOR CONTRACTORS IN 2021

By December 16, 2020December 17th, 2020No Comments
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Below are some highlights of new laws for contractors taking effect in 2021 courtesy of the California Contractor’s License Board.

A.B. 2471:  Extends the right to cancel contracts for persons 65 years of age or older from three business days to five business days for the following transactions: home solicitation contracts, home improvement contracts, Property Assessed Clean Energy assessment contracts, service and repair contracts, and seminar sales contracts.

A.B. 1551:  Relates to Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing home improvements through PACE assessment contracts, as regulated by the California Financing Law and the Streets and Highways Code. AB 1551 prohibits “prepayment penalties” in PACE assessment contracts and prohibits PACE assessments on properties with reverse mortgages. This bill also requires the PACE Financing Estimate and Disclosure to be provided to the homeowner in printed, paper form unless the property owner signs a printed paper document opting out of a hard copy; if they opt-out, they may receive the disclosure electronically.

A.B. 2210:  Authorizes disciplinary action against a licensed contractor for violations of tree worker safety regulations administered by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health without regard to whether death or serious injury to an employee resulted from the violation. This bill also extends the time for the CSLB registrar to bring disciplinary action against a licensed contractor for violations of the Labor Code or the specified tree safety regulations from 180 days to 18 months.

A.B. 3087:  Authorizes the CSLB registrar to contract with a public or private organization to administer, and provide services and materials for, CSLB’s contractor license exams.

S.B. 865:  Makes several changes to the Dig Safe Act of 2016, including renaming the California Underground Facilities Safe Excavation Board to “Dig Safe Board”; updating requirements about the exchange of information and records between the Dig Safe Board and regional notification centers (RNC); requiring that all new subsurface installations use specified mapping technology; and requiring that an excavator notify the RNC within 48 hours of discovering or causing damage. The bill also updates some of the enforcement responsibilities of the Dig Safe Board, including the option to require that violators take an educational course in lieu of paying a fine.

S.B. 1189:  Creates a new classification of contracting business called “residential remodeling contracting,” which is defined as projects that make improvements to, on, or in an existing residential wood-frame structure that uses at least three unrelated building trades or crafts for a single contract; a list of trades is included in the bill.  The bill also includes in the definition of “home improvement” the reconstruction, restoration, or rebuilding of residential property damaged or destroyed by a disaster for which either the governor or president has declared a state of emergency. The bill also expands the type of contracting activity in a declared disaster zone for which a person without a contractor license can be prosecuted. (Chapter 364, Statutes of 2020)

S.B. 1474:  Requires the CSLB registrar to retroactively reinstate an expired contractor license if a completed license renewal application is received with the appropriate fees within 90 days of the license expiration date.  It also makes several minor, technical, non-substantive changes to the law.

In addition to Legislative changes, the California Division of Occupational Safety & Health (Cal/OSHA) continues to promulgate rules and regulations related to job safety at construction sites during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  These rules have been updated and continue to change as the Pandemic evolves.  We encourage our readers to get to up to date guidance and information from Cal/OSHA at https://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/coronavirus/

 

For more information on this please contact Principal Attorney Colin K. McCarthy, ckmccarthy@lanak-hanna.com.

The information contained in this Newsletter has been prepared by Lanak & Hanna, P.C. for educational and informational purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice, nor does it substitute for legal advice.

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