All's fair in love and war. They're not licensed, sucks to be them.
On public bids, rarely did I see customers willing to accept someone who didn't have all the credentials specified, simply because they knew other contractors would report it. In the rare cases it did happen, I would never hesitate to do everything in my power to get that contractor thrown out. If you're going to go through the trouble of the bidding process, and you don't follow your own rules, nor the laws of the municipality, you deserve everything coming to you.
I believe the question is actually do you tell only the customer or the customer and the state board. It would seem that Ethan and A are choosing the latter, (clarification welcome), but that choice should not be seen as one just affecting the unlicensed contractor.
Often times the Customer may know or does not care to know that a contractor is missing some certification, or is failing in regards to some qualification. Still they want to move forward with the unlicensed contractor, sometimes because of assurances given, sometimes not.
In that case doing 'everything in your power' may be viewed as an action against the customer as well as the unlicensed party. Of course it is still your right, but is it always the right thing to do?
Before you do anything, you need to think about what can happen or possibly go wrong. Could your name be thrown in the mud or be part of a future media poop storm? A PR Backlash or End Users who lose your trust?
Example from another Industry that recently happened in WI.
Pro Focus LLC | 02/20/15 09:52pm
We don't have CCTV licensing here in Ohio, so I am unsure how I would deal with it.
I can't speak for every state, but in NC, the State Licensing Board is not empowerd to conduct investigations without someone first filing a complaint. This is very troubling to me for some reason. The people who are tasked with enforcing the law can't unless someone complains, officially. You cannot file an anonymous complaint. One must go on record and present verifiable evidence to investigators before they can do anything. I see this everywhere. On Craigslist, on-line, on vehicles, everywhere I go. I could find 5 or 6 a week easy (thou shalt remember the sabbath and keep it holy). If I can see it, I am sure investigators can too.
I agree with Ethan across the board on this one. I too dispise public bids and try to steer clear. But when necessary, part of our process is to verify the credentials of every company on the bid list.
Doesn’t the phrase “We sub contract out all licensed work” kind of kill any argument that another integrator may bring in front of a board?
Does the OP refer only to public, sealed bids?
What about when just submitting a proposal for work, if you know a competitor is also doing the same? And you believe them to be lacking the necessary certifications...
Tell the Customer, State or the Competitor?
Immediately after a natural disaster the streets flood with rats of all types snatching insurance cheese from unsuspecting clients who are not contractors and don't understand the benefit of hiring a licensed contractor or the risk of hiring an unlicensed person. When licensing is required sometimes it appears as though you can still get away with it even when reported.
The good guys try to do it all correct and the dishonest wait to get caught.
I learned a lesson about contracting on military bases where the bid RFP outlines all TE licenses required to scare off the unwitting. Only to learn that the unlicensed learned that military bases are on Federal property and state laws and licenses don't apply. One electrician kept winning bids after he lost his license and they couldn't prevent him.
Alarm companies are licensed by many agencies in different places and I was at a meeting where Arizona is considering eliminating background checks as a nuisance to job creation! I pity the customers.
Mark, That does not make sense at all. Are you saying that every general contractor were you at has to be licensed in every trade to bid on a project?
Certainly not. Perhaps I am missing your point. The point I was try to make is that in NC, if you are conducting security work of any kind, be it consultation, sales, installation or service you must carry a security license from the State Alarm Board. It makes no difference if you are bidding as the prime on a security only project or as a sub on a larger project. If I read your response correctly, your contention is that an electrical contractor (for instance) can bid a security only project, sub out the security installation and meet the letter of the law and negate any complaint the alarm board may have against them. Not true. That principal is in violation of the letter and spirit of the law. A GC can legally make that claim obviously because he has subcontracted a portion of a larger contract to a licensed security contractor. He has met his legal obligation.
If a contractor bids and sells a security only project, as a prime, they had better have a security license. Not my rule, state law.
Is there more to it than This? Because reading the laws it seems that the only time cameras are even mentioned is if they are specific to "cameras used to detect burglary" and "monitored access control"
Its also specific "No person, firm, association, corporation, or department or division of a firm, association or corporation, shall engage in or hold itself out as engaging in an alarm systems business"
Why can't a "Security Only" project have a prime, and say... 3 subs. IT / Electrical / Security. If each of the 3 primes hold their own required certifications, what is the problem?
Similar to California. I haven't stayed up on it lately but I can imaging trunk slammers stating the camera isn't "detecting" anything, just recording it. Even then, anything over a few hundred dollars exceeds the "handyman" exemption and still requires at a minimum a low voltage contractors license.
I can imaging trunk slammers stating the camera isn't "detecting" anything, just recording it.
I imagine they would end up in the 'slammer'.