Capitol Connection Q&A for Contractors - Week of January 9, 2023

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By Shauna Krause, President, Capitol Services, Inc. 

Let’s hop on with a three ‘partner’ question for the Year of the Rabbit 2023! I will look into my ‘crystal ball’, not really, but I can share an expert opinion with another contractor. Let’s wrap up with a positive note and props to CSLB… 

Q: We have a tri-venture license with two other companies with current work going on. Our company is currently undergoing a consolidation and will be merged into another company and cease to exist as of January 1, 2023. We will be getting a new license for the new company. How will this affect our Joint Venture license? The Joint Venture doesn’t expire until August 2023. 

A: When one of the entities of a Joint Venture ceases to exist, you are required to get a new Joint Venture license.

Q: I had a license awhile back that I let lapse when I went to work for a Company that was already licensed. It’s been expired for about 7 years. I have called the CSLB a couple of times to get information on reactivating the license. The first time I called I was told I would have sit for the exams again. The second time I called I asked the representative if there was any way I would be able to get the license back and not have to take the exams again. That person told me I could submit an application and include a letter requesting the license number be re-issued and also request to waive the exams based on my experience. Based on that information, I put together what I thought was a great letter/plea/request for my number back and to not have to sit for the exam. While I have been impatiently waiting for a response to my application, I found your website and thought I could ask you what you thought the outcome will be.

A: I looked up your license and because it has been expired for over five years, you will be required to take the exams again, however since your license was a Sole Proprietorship, you can ask for the number to be re-issued so that part of your request should be granted at least!

Q: I spoke to you earlier this year regarding obtaining a contractor’s license and after going over my experience with you, which is mostly owner-builder, you had suggested I get some more experience under my belt before applying for my own license. Since then, I received a call from a CSLB investigator informing me I was in violation of some advertising laws and such based on my website and the magnet on my truck. She is going to be emailing me the information and the fine involved. I’m going to comply obviously, but she mentioned something which I thought was interesting and somewhat contradictory. She said she is in no way encouraging me to do contracting work without a license, BUT not to forget that un-licensed work experience counts as credit for obtaining a license. My immediate thought was, is this some sort of trap? Then I thought I would check with my expert on whether you thought I can maybe qualify for a license at this point! To refresh your memory, I have an MBA and about 10 months of un-licensed experience. 

A: Sounds like you are almost there! The person you spoke with is correct and it’s not a trap! Despite what most contractors think, the CSLB really does want contractors to be properly licensed and they aren’t just there to play “gotcha”. While un-licensed work counts towards the experience you are required to show to obtain a license, you absolutely need to have some sort of “paper trail” to document the work you’ve done. You can call me to discuss further so we can go over your work experience again. 



While knowledge is power, knowing where to go for the answers is half the battle. Get expert assistance immediately when you call 866-443-0657, email, or write us at Capitol Services, Inc., 3609 Bradshaw Rd, Ste H, #343, Sacramento, CA 95827. Search past columns at