Contractor question - workman's compensation

Page 1 of 2  

I've made arrangements to have my water main replaced by a licensed plumbing contractor in CA. I just met him last night and the work isn't going to start for a week, so I can back out of this if I call him today or tomorrow easily enough. I have another decent bid and I could go with them (a pretty large company).
I just looked up his license and he's a sole owner and it says "This license is exempt from having workers compensation insurance; they certified that they have no employees at this time."
He said he'd try to hire a tough competent guy to help with the trenching. What happens if that guy is hurt on the job? Am I going to be liable?
TIA for information.
Dan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Essentially they are both covered by your homeowners policy

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Even more essential, you are screwed if there is a major clam. He should also have liability insurance.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
He's probably required to have liability, but if he works alone, isn't always required

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Sorry, screwed that up. He probably is required to have liability, but if he works alone, isn't always required to have workers comp

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 3 Jan 2007 15:43:56 -0500, "RBM" <rbm2(remove
:Essentially they are both covered by your homeowners policy
Don't have one. I have fire insurance but because my house needs major improvements my insurance broker refuses to write me a general homeowner's policy.
Dan
: :> I've made arrangements to have my water main replaced by a licensed :> plumbing contractor in CA. I just met him last night and the work isn't :> going to start for a week, so I can back out of this if I call him today :> or tomorrow easily enough. I have another decent bid and I could go with :> them (a pretty large company).:> :> I just looked up his license and he's a sole owner and it says "This :> license is exempt from having workers compensation insurance; they :> certified that they have no employees at this time.":> :> He said he'd try to hire a tough competent guy to help with the :> trenching. What happens if that guy is hurt on the job? Am I going to be :> liable?:> :> TIA for information.:> :> Dan :
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
That being the case, I would avoid anyone without the full compliment of insurances

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If you value your house do not hire uninsured contractors if they get hurt on your property (with no homeowners insurance) they will sue you for your property. or let them do the job and fire them before they hit the ground (while falling).
I would cancel the contract within 3 days. Hire someone reputable with all insurances.
| :> I've made arrangements to have my water main replaced by a licensed | :> plumbing contractor in CA. I just met him last night and the work isn't | :> going to start for a week, so I can back out of this if I call him today | :> or tomorrow easily enough. I have another decent bid and I could go with | :> them (a pretty large company). | :> | :> I just looked up his license and he's a sole owner and it says "This | :> license is exempt from having workers compensation insurance; they | :> certified that they have no employees at this time." | :> | :> He said he'd try to hire a tough competent guy to help with the | :> trenching. What happens if that guy is hurt on the job? Am I going to be | :> liable? | :> | :> TIA for information. | :> | :> Dan | : |
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

It's not always possible to get worker's comp insurance. For example, here in Georgia no one writes worker's comp for sole proprieters.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The Streets wrote:

It used to be that way here in Massachusetts, but unless I'm remembering wrongly a few years ago they started letting unincorporated sole proprietors buy it on themselves.
And about the same time they let majority owners/officers of businesses opt-out of having to carry it on themselves here.
I bet they would issue worker's comp insurance in Georgia if the sole proprietor forms an S-corporation with him/herself as the only employee.
That's the way sole proprietors who needed it for customers who required it in order to do business with them used to do it here.
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:
:If you value your house :do not hire uninsured contractors :if they get hurt on your property (with no homeowners insurance) they :will sue you for your property. :or let them do the job and fire them before they hit the ground (while :falling). : :I would cancel the contract within 3 days. :Hire someone reputable with all insurances.
I didn't sign anything. It was a handshake deal and we agreed that unless I call and cancel (within a day or two), he'd just assume the deal was on and he'd show up next Wednesday (6 days away now).
I called him last night and left a message that there is something I have to ask him. He hasn't returned the call (it's about 18 hours later). I have a mind to call the company who is doing my sewer laterals and ask if they'll do the job the way I want it done and just go with them. They've treated me very well, all in all, I feel. Then I'll call this uninsured guy and just say I have to pass on it. Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

As soon as he hires a guy he is working outside the scope of his license. I am a SP myself and the only way I can hire labor is to get it from another licensed, bonded, insured company unless I want to expose myself to lawyers and possible sanctions from the state. 99% of the time nothing bad really happens and you get away with it but you must be prepared for that 1%. If his labor is also licensed as an SP you have reduced liability but we are in a country where anyone can sue anybody for damn near anything.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I think you hit the nail on the head, when an accident happens, everyone gets sued

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Foe sure, here is an example where a reckless hooftie is suing the police because they chased him when he was driving his quad on city streets:
http://www.power-of-attorneys.com/stupid_lawsuit_month.asp
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dan_Musicant wrote:

You need to check with your state. They don't all have the same rules. It has happened around here that the home owner ended up with the bill.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

imho:
If he states one thing to one official and then another to you, could be truthful? Based on that, you might want to rethink about the situation. Have him furnish paper work proving his current insurances, he might have upgraded since he started working. If not, use common sense.
Not a Lawyer, or a legal offical.
tom @ www.MeetANewFriend.com
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

imho:
Just thought of something, it is possible that your plumber will 'get' a person from a temp service. I belived they come with their own workman's comp, since the temp help isn't hired, but leased. Kindof. Like I said, get all the paperwork ahead of time, and verify it. ;)
tom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Good grief, Dan! I hate the words "should" and "probably" and the likes.
With all the frivolous litigations going on, your state being one of the leaders, (no offense), why would you want to even mess with someone you have any doubts about?
To save some money perhaps?
Imagine the worst thing that can happen. Someone gets killed. You think ANYONE is going to give you a walk? I doubt it.
Take everything you own. Pile it in the house. Spread five gallons of gas on it. If there is an accident, that's what's gonna happen to all your stuff.
Insist that your CONTRACTOR'S INSURANCE CARRIER send DIRECTLY TO YOU a copy of their current in force policy. Don't accept it from your contractor, as they can be and are faked easily.
This is a big deal. Do it right. Your ass is the only one on the line you should be concerned about.
Steve
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

for a big project. But do people really do that for every small job? Presumably the liability from a fall is the same whether fixing one shingle or redoing the whole roof? Just it seems to me that it is hard enough sometimes getting someone even without doing that...
What happens with so-called "handy men"? Even after spending mega bucks on big projects, my folks who are now getting on in age use a handy man for the small things. Presumably, the same liability would apply if he fell off a ladder or shocked himself, etc. Right?
Damn this litigous society. If someone you hired (who defacto is claiming expertise in such services hurts himself), he should be 100% responsible unless you were grossly negligent. Even then, as a professional I would expect him to recognize such dangers in advance and take precautions unless again you were grossly negligent and the dangers were completely hidden and undisclosed. If he chooses not to buy insurance that should be his fault. <end of soapbox>

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
:Damn this litigous society. If someone you hired (who defacto is :claiming expertise in such services hurts himself), he should be 100% :responsible unless you were grossly negligent. Even then, as a :professional I would expect him to recognize such dangers in advance :and take precautions unless again you were grossly negligent and the :dangers were completely hidden and undisclosed. If he chooses not to :buy insurance that should be his fault. <end of soapbox>
This makes real sense to me. I eventually went with the fully insured party, a pretty big plumbing company. I could have had the job done for 30% less by uninsured people. I could have had the job done for 5% less by a competent plumber who would have hired an insured helper, if I'd been patient enough. However, I was using the neighbor's water and wanted to get on with the project.
I could have called I guy I met recently who would probably have done the work for less than 50% of what I'm paying and he probably isn't insured. However, I'm confident he's no cheat or crook. I'm not one to play it straight all the time but this time I did. People in this NG told me to, so I figured maybe I should.
After watching the guys do the work I realize I could have done it all myself. However, hindsight is 20-20, and I didn't know I was capable of the job until I WATCHED it being done from beginning to end, more or less. If I had to have the job done today, I'd do it myself and for around 20% the cost (i.e. materials). I watched them trenching and it looked totally easy. I have the shovels and could have borrowed any other tools needed, although I think I have all those too.
Dan
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.