§ 87-1. "General contractor" defined; exceptions.
(a) For the purpose of this Article any person or firm or corporation who for a fixed price, commission, fee, or wage, undertakes to bid upon or to construct or who undertakes to superintend or manage, on his own behalf or for any person, firm, or corporation that is not licensed as a general contractor pursuant to this Article, the construction of any building, highway, public utilities, grading or any improvement or structure where the cost of the undertaking is thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or more, or undertakes to erect a North Carolina labeled manufactured modular building meeting the North Carolina State Building Code, shall be deemed to be a "general contractor" engaged in the business of general contracting in the State of North Carolina.
(b) This section shall not apply to the following:
(1) Persons, firms, or corporations furnishing or erecting industrial equipment, power plan equipment, radial brick chimneys, and monuments.
(2) Any person, firm, or corporation who constructs or alters a building on land owned by that person, firm, or corporation provided (i) the building is intended solely for occupancy by that person and his family, firm, or corporation after completion; and (ii) the person, firm, or corporation complies with G.S. 87-14. If the building is not occupied solely by the person and his family, firm, or corporation for at least 12 months following completion, it shall be presumed that the person, firm, or corporation did not intend the building solely for occupancy by that person and his family, firm, or corporation.
(3) Any person engaged in the business of farming who constructs or alters a building on land owned by that person and used in the business of farming, when the building is intended for use by that person after completion. (1925, c. 318, s. 1; 1931, c. 62, s. 1; 1937, c. 429, s. 1; 1949, c. 936; 1953, c. 810; 1971, c. 246, s. 1; 1975, c. 279, s. 1; 1981, c. 783, s. 1; 1989, c. 109, s. 1; c. 653, s. 1; 1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 840, s. 1; 2011-376, s. 1.)
§ 87-1.1. Exception for licensees under Article 2 or 4.
G.S. 87-1 shall not apply to a licensee under Article 2 or 4 of this Chapter of the General Statutes, G.S. 87-43 shall not apply to a licensee under Article 2 of this Chapter of the General Statutes, and G.S. 87-21(a)(5) shall not apply to a licensee under Article 4 of this Chapter of the General Statutes when the licensee is bidding and contracting directly with the owner of a building project if all of the following apply:
(1) A licensed general contractor performs all work that falls within the classifications in G.S. 87-10(b) and the State Licensing Board of General Contractor's rules.
(2) The total amount of the general contracting work so classified does not exceed a percentage of the total bid price pursuant to rules established by the Board.
(3) A licensee with the appropriate license under Article 2 or Article 4 of this Chapter performs all work that falls within the classifications in Article 2 and Article 4 of this Chapter.
(4) The total amount of the work under the classifications in Article 2 of this Chapter does not exceed a percentage of the total bid price pursuant to rules established by the State Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors.
(5) The total amount of the work under the classifications in Article 4 of this Chapter does not exceed a percentage of the total bid price pursuant to rules established by the State Board of Examiners of Plumbing, Heating, and Fire Sprinkler Contractors. (2003-231, s. 1; 2006-241, s. 2; 2006-259, s. 43; 2006-261, s. 3; 2021-122, s. 1; 2022-6, s. 20.9(a).)
§ 87-1.2. Exception for specified Department of Transportation contractors.
The letting of contracts for the types of projects specified in G.S. 136-28.14 shall not be subject to the licensing requirement of this Article. (2006-261, s. 2.)
§ 87-2. Licensing Board; organization.
There is created the State Licensing Board for General Contractors consisting of nine members appointed by the Governor for staggered five-year terms. Five of the members shall be general contractors, one member shall be a registered engineer who practices structural engineering, and three shall be public members. Of the general contractor members, one shall have as the larger part of his business the construction of highways; one shall have as the larger part of his business the construction of public utilities; one shall have as the larger part of his business the construction of buildings; and two shall have as a larger part of their businesses the construction of residences, one of whom shall be the holder of an unlimited general contractor's license. The public members shall have no ties with the construction industry and shall represent the interests of the public at large. Members shall serve until the expiration of their respective terms and until their successors are appointed and qualified. Vacancies occurring during a term shall be filled by appointment of the Governor for the remainder of the unexpired term. The Governor may remove any member of the Board for misconduct, incompetency, or neglect of duty. No Board member shall serve more than two complete consecutive terms. (1925, c. 318, s. 2; 1979, c. 713, s. 1; 1991, c. 124, s. 1.)
§ 87-3. Members of Board to take oath.
Each member of the Board shall, before entering upon the discharge of the duties of his office, take and file with the Secretary of State an oath in writing to properly perform the duties of his office as a member of said Board and to uphold the Constitution of North Carolina and the Constitution of the United States. (1925, c. 318, s. 3.)
§ 87-4. First meeting of Board; officers; secretary-treasurer and assistants.
The said Board shall, within 30 days after its appointment by the Governor, meet in the City of Raleigh, at a time and place to be designated by the Governor, and organize by electing a chairman, a vice-chairman, and a secretary-treasurer, each to serve for one year. Said Board shall have power to make such bylaws, rules and regulations as it shall deem best, provided the same are not in conflict with the laws of North Carolina. The secretary-treasurer shall give bond in such sum as the Board shall determine, with such security as shall be approved by the Board, said bond to be conditioned for the faithful performance of the duties of his office and for the faithful accounting of all moneys and other property as shall come into his hands. The secretary-treasurer need not be a member of the Board, and the Board is hereby authorized to employ a full-time secretary-treasurer, and such other assistants and make such other expenditures as may be necessary to the proper carrying out of the provisions of this Article. Payment of compensation and reimbursement of expenses of board members shall be governed by G.S. 93B-5. (1925, c. 318, s. 4; 1941, c. 257, s. 4; 1947, c. 611; 1951, c. 453; 1979, c. 713, s. 6.)
§ 87-5. Seal of Board.
The Board shall adopt a seal for its own use. The seal shall have the words "North Carolina Licensing Board for General Contractors" and the secretary shall have charge, care and custody thereof. (1925, c. 318, s. 5; 1979, c. 713, s. 7.)
§ 87-6. Meetings; notice; quorum.
The Board shall meet twice each year, once in April and once in October, for the purpose of transacting such business as may properly come before it. At the April meeting in each year the Board shall elect officers. Special meetings may be held at such times as the Board may provide in the bylaws it shall adopt. Due notice of each meeting and the time and place thereof shall be given to each member in such manner as the bylaws may provide. Five members of the Board shall constitute a quorum. (1925, c. 318, s. 6; 1979, c. 713, s. 8.)
§ 87-7. Records of Board; disposition of funds.
The secretary-treasurer shall keep a record of the proceedings of the said Board and shall receive and account for all moneys derived from the operation of this Article. Any funds remaining in the hands of the secretary-treasurer to the credit of the Board after the expenses of the Board for the current year have been paid shall be paid over to the Greater University of North Carolina for the use of the School of Engineering through the North Carolina Engineering Foundation. The Board has the right, however, to retain at least ten percent (10%) of the total expense it incurs for a year's operation to meet any emergency that may arise. As an expense of the Board, said Board is authorized to expend such funds as it deems necessary to provide retirement and disability compensation for its employees. (1925, c. 318, s. 7; 1953, c. 805, s. 1; 1959, c. 1184.)
§ 87-8. Records; roster of licensed contractors; report to Governor.
The secretary-treasurer shall keep a record of the proceedings of the Board and a register of all applicants for license showing for each the date of application, name, qualifications, place of business, place of residence, and whether license was granted or refused. The books and register of this Board shall be prima facie evidence of all matters recorded therein. A roster showing the names and places of business and of residence of all licensed general contractors shall be prepared by the secretary of the Board during the month of March of each year; the roster shall be printed by the Board out of funds of the Board as provided in G.S. 87-7, with copies being made available to contractors and members of the public, at cost, upon request, or furnished without cost, as directed by the Board. On or before the last day of March of each year the Board shall submit to the Governor a report of its transactions for the preceding year, and shall file with the Secretary of State a copy of the report, together with a complete statement of the receipts and expenditures of the Board, attested by the affidavits of the chairman and the secretary, and a copy of the roster of licensed general contractors. (1925, c. 318, s. 8; 1937, c. 429, s. 2; 1985, c. 630, s. 1; 1993, c. 148, s. 1.)
§ 87-9. Compliance with Federal Highway Act, etc.; contracts financed by federal road funds; contracts concerning water or waste water systems.
Nothing in this Article shall operate to prevent the Department of Transportation from complying with any act of Congress and any rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto for carrying out the provisions of the Federal Highway Act, or shall apply to any person, firm or corporation proposing to submit a bid or enter into contract for any work to be financed in whole or in part with federal aid road funds in such manner as will conflict with any act of Congress or any such rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto.
Neither shall anything in this Article prevent the State of North Carolina or any of its political subdivisions or their contractors from complying with any act of Congress and any rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto for carrying out the provisions of any federal program to assist in the planning, financing, or construction of drinking water or waste water processing, collection, and disposal systems and facilities. (1939, c. 230; 1971, c. 246, s. 2; 1973, c. 507, s. 5; 1977, c. 464, s. 34; 1989, c. 159.)
§ 87-9.1. Ownership of real property; equipment; liability insurance.
(a) The Board shall have the power to acquire, hold, rent, encumber, alienate, and otherwise deal with real property in the same manner as a private person or corporation, subject only to approval of the Governor and the Council of State as to the acquisition, rental, encumbering, leasing, and sale of real property. Collateral pledged by the Board for an encumbrance is limited to the assets, income, and revenues of the Board.
(b) The Board may purchase or rent equipment and supplies and purchase liability insurance or other insurance to cover the activities of the Board, its operations, or its employees. (1999-349, s. 1.)
§ 87-10. Application for license; examination; certificate; renewal.
(a) Anyone seeking to be licensed as a general contractor in this State shall submit an application. Before being entitled to an examination, an applicant shall:
(1) Be at least 18 years of age.
(2) Possess good moral character as determined by the Board.
(3) Provide evidence of financial responsibility as determined by the Board.
(4) Submit the appropriate application fee.
(5) Consent to a criminal background check if required by the Board.
(a1) The Board shall require an applicant to pay the Board or a provider contracted by the Board an examination fee not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100.00). In addition to the costs of any criminal background check, the Board shall also require an applicant to pay the Board a fee not to exceed one hundred twenty-five dollars ($125.00) if the application is for an unlimited license, one hundred dollars ($100.00) if the application is for an intermediate license, or seventy-five dollars ($75.00) if the application is for a limited license. The fees accompanying any application or examination shall be nonrefundable. The holder of an unlimited license shall be entitled to act as general contractor without restriction as to value of any single project; the holder of an intermediate license shall be entitled to act as general contractor for any single project with a value of up to one million five hundred thousand dollars ($1,500,000), excluding the cost of land and any ancillary costs to improve the land; the holder of a limited license shall be entitled to act as general contractor for any single project with a value of up to seven hundred fifty thousand dollars ($750,000), excluding the cost of land and any ancillary costs to improve the land. The license certificate shall be classified in accordance with this section.
(a2) In determining an applicant's qualifications for licensure, the Board may utilize a criminal background check. If the Board uses a criminal background check, the provisions of G.S. 93B-8.1 shall apply. The Board shall keep all information obtained from criminal background checks privileged in accordance with applicable State law and federal guidelines, and the information shall be confidential and not a public record under Chapter 132 of the General Statutes.
(a3) Records, papers, and other documentation containing personal information collected or compiled by the Board in connection with an application for examination, licensure, certification, or renewal or reinstatement, or the subsequent update of information shall not be considered public records within the meaning of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes.
(b) An applicant shall identify an individual who has successfully passed an examination approved by the Board who, for purposes of this section, shall be known as the "qualifier" or the "qualifying party" of the applicant. If the qualifier or the qualifying party seeks to take an examination, the examination shall establish (i) the ability of the applicant to make a practical application of the applicant's knowledge of the profession of contracting; (ii) the qualifications of the applicant in reading plans and specifications, knowledge of relevant matters contained in the North Carolina State Building Code, knowledge of estimating costs, construction, ethics, and other similar matters pertaining to the contracting business; (iii) the knowledge of the applicant as to the responsibilities of a contractor to the public and of the requirements of the laws of the State of North Carolina relating to contractors, construction, and liens; and (iv) the applicant's knowledge of requirements of the Sedimentation Pollution Control Act of 1973, Article 4 of Chapter 113A of the General Statutes, and the rules adopted pursuant to that Article. If the qualifier or qualifying party passes the examination, upon review of the application and all relevant information, the Board shall issue a license to the applicant to engage in general contracting in the State of North Carolina, which may be limited as follows:
(1) Building contractor, which shall include private, public, commercial, industrial and residential buildings of all types.
(1a) Residential contractor, which shall include any general contractor constructing only residences which are required to conform to the residential building code adopted by the Building Code Council pursuant to G.S. 143-138.
(2) Highway contractor.
(3) Public utilities contractors, which shall include those whose operations are the performance of construction work on the following subclassifications of facilities:
a. Water and sewer mains, water service lines, and house and building sewer lines as defined in the North Carolina State Building Code, and water storage tanks, lift stations, pumping stations, and appurtenances to water storage tanks, lift stations, and pumping stations.
b. Water and wastewater treatment facilities and appurtenances thereto.
c. Electrical power transmission facilities, and primary and secondary distribution facilities ahead of the point of delivery of electric service to the customer.
d. Public communication distribution facilities.
e. Natural gas and other petroleum products distribution facilities; provided the General Contractors Licensing Board may issue license to a public utilities contractor limited to any of the above subclassifications for which the general contractor qualifies.
(4) Specialty contractor, which shall include those whose operations as such are the performance of construction work requiring special skill and involving the use of specialized building trades or crafts, but which shall not include any operations now or hereafter under the jurisdiction, for the issuance of license, by any board or commission pursuant to the laws of the State of North Carolina.
(b1) Public utilities contractors constructing house and building sewer lines as provided in sub-subdivision a. of subdivision (3) of subsection (b) of this section shall, at the junction of the public sewer line and the house or building sewer line, install as an extension of the public sewer line a cleanout at or near the property line that terminates at or above the finished grade. Public utilities contractors constructing water service lines as provided in sub-subdivision a. of subdivision (3) of subsection (b) of this section shall terminate the water service lines at a valve, box, or meter at which the facilities from the building may be connected. Public utilities contractors constructing fire service mains for connection to fire sprinkler systems shall terminate those lines at a flange, cap, plug, or valve inside the building one foot above the finished floor. All fire service mains shall comply with the NFPA standards for fire service mains as incorporated into and made applicable by Volume V of the North Carolina Building Code.
(c) If an applicant is an individual, examination may be taken by his personal appearance for examination, or by the appearance for examination of one or more of his responsible managing employees. If an applicant is a copartnership, a corporation, or any other combination or organization, the examination may be taken by one or more of the responsible managing officers or members of the personnel of the applicant.
(c1) If the qualifier or qualifying party shall cease to be connected with the licensee, then the license shall remain in full force and effect for a period of 90 days. After 90 days, the license shall be invalidated, however the licensee shall be entitled to return to active status pursuant to all relevant statutes and rules promulgated by the Board. However, during the 90-day period described in this subsection, the licensee shall not bid on or undertake any additional contracts from the time such qualifier or qualifying party ceased to be connected with the licensee until the license is reinstated as provided in this Article.
(d) Repealed by Session Laws 2017-10, s. 2.13(a), effective October 1, 2017, and applicable to applications for licensure submitted on or after that date.
(d1) The Board may require a new application if a qualifier or qualifying party requests to take an examination a third or subsequent time.
(e) A license shall expire on the first day of January following its issuance or renewal and shall become invalid 60 days from that date unless renewed, subject to the approval of the Board. Renewal applications shall be submitted with a fee not to exceed one hundred twenty-five dollars ($125.00) for an unlimited license, one hundred dollars ($100.00) for an intermediate license, and seventy-five dollars ($75.00) for a limited license. Renewal applications shall be accompanied by evidence of continued financial responsibility and evidence of satisfactory completion of continuing education as required by G.S. 87-10.2. Renewal applications received by the Board on or after the first day of January shall be accompanied by a late payment of ten dollars ($10.00) for each month or part after January.
(f) After a license has been invalid for four years, a licensee shall not be permitted to renew the license, and the license shall be deemed archived. If a licensee wishes to be relicensed subsequent to the archival of the license, the licensee shall fulfill all requirements of a new applicant as set forth in this section. Archived licensed numbers shall not be renewed. (1925, c. 318, s. 9; 1931, c. 62, s. 2; 1937, c. 328; c. 429, s. 3; 1941, c. 257, s. 1; 1953, c. 805, s. 2; c. 1041, s. 3; 1971, c. 246, s. 3; 1973, c. 1036, ss. 1, 2; c. 1331, s. 3; 1975, c. 279, ss. 2, 3; 1979, c. 713, s. 2; 1981, c. 739, ss. 1, 2; 1985, c. 630, ss. 2, 3; 1989, c. 431; 1993, c. 112, ss. 1, 2; c. 553, s. 26; 1999-123, s. 1; 1999-379, s. 7; 1999-427, s. 1; 2001-140, s. 1; 2001-296, s. 1; 2005-381, ss. 1, 2, 3; 2006-241, s. 1; 2007-247, s. 3; 2011-376, s. 5; 2017-10, s. 2.13(a); 2019-72, s. 2; 2021-121, s. 1(a); 2022-11, s. 12.)
§ 87-10.1. Licensing of nonresidents.
(a) Definitions. - The following definitions apply in this section:
(1) Delinquent income tax debt. - The amount of income tax due as stated in a final notice of assessment issued to a taxpayer by the Secretary of Revenue when the taxpayer no longer has the right to contest the amount.
(2) Foreign corporation. - Defined in G.S. 55-1-40.
(3) Foreign entity. - A foreign corporation, a foreign limited liability company, or a foreign partnership.
(4) Foreign limited liability company. - Has the same meaning as the term "foreign LLC" in G.S. 57D-1-03.
(5) Foreign partnership. - Either of the following that does not have a permanent place of business in this State:
a. A foreign limited partnership as defined in G.S. 59-102.
b. A general partnership formed under the laws of a jurisdiction other than this State.
(b) Licensing. - The Board shall not issue a certificate of license for a foreign corporation unless the corporation has obtained a certificate of authority from the Secretary of State pursuant to Article 15 of Chapter 55 of the General Statutes. The Board shall not issue a certificate of license for a foreign limited liability company unless the company has obtained a certificate of authority from the Secretary of State pursuant to Article 7 of Chapter 57D of the General Statutes.
(c) Information. - Upon request, the Board shall provide the Secretary of Revenue on an annual basis the name, address, and tax identification number of every nonresident individual and foreign entity licensed by the Board. The information shall be provided in the format required by the Secretary of Revenue.
(d) Delinquents. - If the Secretary of Revenue determines that any nonresident individual or foreign corporation licensed by the board, a member of any foreign limited liability company licensed by the Board, or a partner in any foreign partnership licensed by the Board, owes a delinquent income tax debt, the Secretary of Revenue may notify the Board of these nonresident individuals and foreign entities and instruct the Board not to renew their certificates of license. The Board shall not renew the certificate of license of such a nonresident individual or foreign entity identified by the Secretary of Revenue unless the Board receives a written statement from the Secretary that the debt either has been paid or is being paid pursuant to an installment agreement. (1998-162, ss. 4, 10; 2013-157, s. 20.)
§ 87-10.2. Continuing education.
(a) As a condition of license renewal, at least one qualifier or qualifying party of a licensee holding a building contractor, residential contractor, or unclassified contractor license classification shall complete, on an annual basis, eight hours of continuing education approved in accordance with this section. Where an entity holding a building contractor, residential contractor, or unclassified contractor license classification has multiple qualifiers or qualifying parties, at least one qualifier or qualifying party of the licensee shall complete this requirement for the license to remain valid.
(b) Of the eight hours of annual continuing education required by this section, two hours shall be a mandatory course approved by the Board and the remaining six hours shall be elective courses approved by the Board. Each qualifier or qualifying party shall complete the mandatory course each year. Each qualifier or qualifying party may accumulate and carry forward up to four hours of elective course credit to the next calendar year. The Board shall evaluate and approve:
(1) The content of continuing education courses.
(2) Accreditation of continuing education sponsors and programs.
(3) Computation of credit.
(4) General compliance procedures.
(5) Providers and instructors of continuing education courses.
(c) All Board-approved providers of the mandatory course shall register Board-approved instructors affiliated with the provider to attend a training program established, approved, and administered by the Board to ensure the quality and consistency of mandatory course information. All prospective providers of elective courses shall submit course materials and instructor qualifications for Board evaluation, approval, and accreditation.
(d) Continuing education credit hours may only be given for courses that are taught live by an instructor approved by the Board. To receive credit, a qualifier or qualifying party shall attend and view the live teaching of the course and shall certify this requirement in the manner required by the Board. Only the period of live instruction shall apply to the satisfaction of the continuing education requirement established by this section. Continuing education providers shall certify the attendance of course attendees and shall transmit the qualifier or qualifying party's certification to the Board. For the purposes of this subsection, "live instruction" includes credit hours presented by video or by Internet transmission of a live or previously recorded and approved presentation by an approved instructor or instructors provided the presentation is either proctored by the approved provider or contains safeguards as approved by the Board that allow the approved provider to certify that the qualifier or qualifying party has viewed the presentation. The Board shall implement procedures to ensure that qualifiers and qualifying parties may satisfy all of the continuing education requirements of this section through approved Internet-based e-learning courses offered by approved providers by Internet transmission.
(e) False certification of attendance shall be grounds for the suspension or revocation of the course provider's privilege to provide courses in this State. The Board may take disciplinary action against any licensee, qualifier, or qualifying party for false certification of attendance by that licensee's qualifier or qualifying party at any continuing education course.
(f) The Board shall maintain and distribute to licensees and qualifiers, as appropriate, records of the required educational coursework successfully completed by each qualifier or qualifying party, including the subject matter and the number of hours of each course.
(g) Continuing education requirements shall begin on January 1 of any calendar year and shall be completed by November 30 of that calendar year. The Board shall establish a 90-day grace period following November 30 of each calendar year for any qualifier or qualifying party who has failed to complete the continuing education requirement. Failure of the qualifier or qualifying party of the entity holding a building contractor, residential contractor, or unclassified contractor license classification to satisfy the annual continuing education requirement by the expiration of the grace period shall result in the license of the entity being invalidated until such time that continuing education and all other licensing requirements have been met.
(h) Any licensee who chooses not to complete the annual continuing education as required by this section may annually request that the Board place the licensee's license in an inactive status and the license shall become invalid for that license year. However, in order for the license to be maintained as inactive, the licensee shall pay the same annual renewal fee paid by active licensees. Should the licensee desire to return to active status, the qualifier or qualifying party of the licensee shall satisfactorily complete the following continuing education requirements prior to seeking reinstatement:
(1) If the licensee seeks reinstatement during the first two years after the license becomes inactive, the qualifier or qualifying party shall complete eight hours of continuing education, including the mandatory course offered during the year of reinstatement.
(2) If the licensee seeks reinstatement more than two years after the license becomes inactive, the qualifier or qualifying party shall complete 16 hours of continuing education, including the mandatory course offered during the year of reinstatement.
(i) The Board shall establish nonrefundable fees for the purpose of administering the continuing education program. The Board may charge the provider of a proposed course a nonrefundable fee not to exceed twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per credit hour for the initial review of the course and a nonrefundable fee of twelve dollars and fifty cents ($12.50) per credit hour for the annual renewal of a course previously approved. The Board shall require an approved course provider to pay a fee, not to exceed five dollars ($5.00) per credit hour per qualifier or qualifying party, for each qualifier or qualifying party completing an approved continuing education course conducted by that provider.
(j) The Board may modify the continuing education requirements set forth in this Article in cases of certified illness or undue hardship as provided for in the rules of the Board.
(k) The Board may adopt rules to implement the requirements of this section. (2019-72, s. 1; 2021-121, s. 1(b).)
§ 87-11. Revocation of license; charges of fraud, negligence, incompetency, etc.; hearing thereon; reissuance of certificate.
(a) The Board shall have the power to refuse to issue or renew or revoke, suspend, or restrict a certificate of license or to issue a reprimand or take other disciplinary action if a general contractor licensed under this Article is found guilty of any fraud or deceit in obtaining a license, or gross negligence, incompetency, or misconduct in the practice of his or her profession, or willful violation of any provision of this Article. The Board shall also have the power to revoke, suspend, or otherwise restrict the ability of any person to act as a qualifying party for a license to practice general contracting, as provided in G.S. 87-10(c), for any copartnership, corporation or any other organization or combination, if that person committed any act in violation of the provisions of this section and the Board may take disciplinary action against the individual license held by that person.
(a1) Any person may prefer charges of fraud, deceit, negligence, or misconduct against any general contractor licensed under this Article. The charges shall be in writing and sworn to by the complainant and submitted to the Board. The charges, unless dismissed without hearing by the Board as unfounded or trivial, shall be heard and determined by the Board in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes.
(b) The Board shall adopt and publish guidelines, consistent with the provisions of this Article, governing the suspension and revocation of licenses.
(c) The Board shall establish and maintain a system whereby detailed records are kept regarding complaints against each licensee. This record shall include, for each licensee, the date and nature of each complaint, investigatory action taken by the Board, any findings by the Board, and the disposition of the matter.
(d) The Board may reissue a license to any person, firm or corporation whose license has been revoked: Provided, five or more members of the Board vote in favor of such reissuance for reasons the Board may deem sufficient.
The Board shall immediately notify the Secretary of State of its findings in the case of the revocation of a license or of the reissuance of a revoked license.
A certificate of license to replace any certificate lost, destroyed or mutilated may be issued subject to the rules and regulations of the Board.
(e) The Board shall be entitled to recover its reasonable administrative costs associated with the investigation and prosecution of a violation of this Article or rules or regulations of the Board up to a maximum of five thousand dollars ($5,000) for any licensee or qualifying party found to have committed any of the following:
(1) Fraud or deceit in obtaining a license.
(2) Gross negligence, incompetency, or misconduct in the practice of general contracting.
(3) Willful violation of any provision of this Article. (1925, c. 318, s. 10; 1937, c. 429, s. 4; 1953, c. 1041, s. 4; 1973, c. 1331, s. 3; 1979, c. 713, s. 3; 1987, c. 827, s. 1; 1991, c. 124, s. 2; 1999-427, s. 2; 2005-381, s. 4.)
§ 87-12. Certificate evidence of license.
The issuance of a certificate of license or limited license by this Board shall be evidence that the person, firm, or corporation named therein is entitled to all the rights and privileges of a licensed or limited licensed general contractor while said license remains unrevoked or unexpired. A licensed general contractor holding a license which qualifies him for work as described in G.S. 87-10 shall be authorized to perform the said work without any additional occupational license, notwithstanding the provisions of any other occupational licensing statute. A license issued by any other occupational licensing board having jurisdiction over any work described in G.S. 87-10 shall qualify such licensee to perform the work for which the license qualifies him without obtaining the license from the General Contractors Licensing Board. Nothing contained herein shall operate to relieve any general contractor from the necessity of compliance with other provisions of the law requiring building permits and construction in accordance with appropriate provisions of the North Carolina State Building Code. (1925, c. 318, s. 11; 1937, c. 429, s. 5; 1975, c. 279, s. 4.)
§ 87-13. Unauthorized practice of contracting; impersonating contractor; false certificate; giving false evidence to Board; penalties.
Any person, firm, or corporation not being duly authorized who shall contract for or bid upon the construction of any of the projects or works enumerated in G.S. 87-1, without having first complied with the provisions hereof, or who shall attempt to practice general contracting in the State, except as provided for in this Article, and any person, firm, or corporation presenting or attempting to file as his own the licensed certificate of another or who shall give false or forged evidence of any kind to the Board or to any member thereof in maintaining a certificate of license or who falsely shall impersonate another or who shall use an expired or revoked certificate of license, or who falsely claims or suggests in connection with any business activities regulated by the Board that a person, firm, or corporation is licensed under this Chapter, and any architect or engineer who recommends to any project owner the award of a contract to anyone not properly licensed under this Article, shall be deemed guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. And the Board may, in its discretion, use its funds to defray the expense, legal or otherwise, in the prosecution of any violations of this Article. No architect or engineer shall be guilty of a violation of this section if his recommendation to award a contract is made in reliance upon current written information received by him from the appropriate Contractor Licensing Board of this State which information erroneously indicates that the contractor being recommended for contract award is properly licensed. (1925, c. 318, s. 12; 1931, c. 62, s. 3; 1937, c. 429, s. 6; 1983 (Reg. Sess., 1984), c. 970, s. 2; 1993, c. 539, s. 602; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 2019-174, s. 6.)
§ 87-13.1. Board may seek injunctive relief; attorney's fee.
Whenever the Board determines that any person, firm or corporation has violated or is violating any of the provisions of this Article or rules and regulations of the Board promulgated under this Article, the Board may apply to the superior court for a restraining order and injunction to restrain the violation; and the superior courts have jurisdiction to grant the requested relief, irrespective of whether or not criminal prosecution has been instituted or administrative sanctions imposed by reason of the violation. When the Board prevails in actions brought under this section, the court shall award the Board its reasonable attorney's fee not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) plus the costs associated with obtaining the relief and the investigation and prosecution of the violation. (1979, c. 713, s. 4; 2003-97, s. 2; 2005-381, s. 5; 2021-121, s. 1(c).)
§ 87-14. Regulations as to issue of building permits.
(a) Any person, firm, or corporation, upon making application to the building inspector or other authority of any incorporated city, town, or county in North Carolina charged with the duty of issuing building or other permits for the construction of any building, highway, sewer, grading, or any improvement or structure where the cost is to be thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or more, shall, before being entitled to a permit, satisfy the following:
(1) Furnish satisfactory proof to the inspector or authority that the applicant seeking the permit or another person contracting to superintend or manage the construction is licensed under this Article to carry out or superintend the construction or is exempt from licensure under G.S. 87-1(b). If an applicant claims an exemption from licensure pursuant to G.S. 87-1(b)(2), the applicant for the building permit shall execute a verified affidavit attesting to the following:
a. That the applicant is the owner of the property on which the building is being constructed and, if the applicant is a firm or corporation, that the person submitting the application is an owner, officer, or member of the firm or corporation that owns the property.
b. That the applicant will personally superintend and manage all aspects of the construction of the building and that the duty will not be delegated to any other person not licensed under this Article.
c. That the applicant will be personally present for all inspections required by the North Carolina State Building Code, unless the plans for the building were drawn and sealed by an architect licensed pursuant to Chapter 83A of the General Statutes.
The building inspector or other authority shall transmit a copy of the affidavit to the Board, which shall verify that the applicant was validly entitled to claim the exemption under G.S. 87-1(b)(2). If the Board determines that the applicant was not entitled to claim the exemption under G.S. 87-1(b)(2), the building permit shall be revoked pursuant to G.S. 160D-1115.
(2) Furnish proof that the applicant has in effect Workers' Compensation insurance as required by Chapter 97 of the General Statutes.
(3) Redesignated as subsection (a1) by Session Laws 2022-62, s. 8, effective July 8, 2022.
(a1) Any person, firm, or corporation, upon making application to the building inspector or other authority of any incorporated city, town, or county in North Carolina charged with the duty of issuing building permits pursuant to G.S. 160D-1110 for any improvements for which the combined cost is to be thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or more, other than for improvements to an existing single-family residential dwelling unit as defined in G.S. 87-15.5(7) that the owner occupies as a residence, or for the addition of an accessory building or accessory structure as defined in the North Carolina Uniform Residential Building Code, the use of which is incidental to that residential dwelling unit, shall be required to provide to the building inspector or other authority the name, physical and mailing address, telephone number, facsimile number, and email address of the lien agent designated by the owner pursuant to G.S. 44A-11.1(a).
(b) It is unlawful for the building inspector or other authority to issue or allow the issuance of a building permit pursuant to this section unless and until the applicant has furnished evidence that the applicant has complied with subsection (a) of this section. Any building inspector or other authority that is subject to and violates this section is guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor and subject only to a fine of not more than fifty dollars ($50.00). (1925, c. 318, s. 13; 1931, c. 62, s. 4; 1937, c. 429, s. 7; 1949, c. 934; 1953, c. 809; 1969, c. 1063, s. 6; 1971, c. 246, s. 4; 1981, c. 783, s. 2; 1989, c. 109, s. 2; 1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 840, s. 2; 1993, c. 539, s. 603; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 2011-376, s. 2; 2012-158, s. 4; 2013-117, s. 4; 2022-62, s. 8.)
§ 87-15. Copy of Article included in specifications; bid not considered unless contractor licensed.
All architects and engineers preparing plans and specifications for work to be contracted in the State of North Carolina shall include in their invitations to bidders and in their specifications a copy of this Article or such portions thereof as are deemed necessary to convey to the invited bidder, whether he be a resident or nonresident of this State and whether a license has been issued to him or not, the information that it will be necessary for him to show evidence of a license before his bid is considered. (1925, c. 318, s. 14; 1937, c. 429, s. 8; 1941, c. 257, s. 2.)
§ 87-15.1. Reciprocity of licensing.
To the extent that other states which provide for the licensing of general contractors provide for similar action, the Board in its discretion may grant licenses of the same or equivalent classification to general contractors licensed by other states, without written examination upon satisfactory proof furnished to the Board that the qualifications of such applicants are equal to the qualifications of holders of similar licenses in North Carolina and upon payment of the required fee. (1971, c. 246, s. 5.)
§ 87-15.2. Public awareness program.
The Board shall establish and implement a public awareness program to inform the general public of the purpose and function of the Board. (1979, c. 713, s. 4.)
§ 87-15.3. Identity of complaining party confidential.
Once a complaint has been filed with the Board against a licensee or an unlicensed general contractor, the Board may, in its discretion, keep the identity of a complaining party confidential and not a public record within the meaning of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes until a time no later than the receipt of the complaint by the full Board for a disciplinary hearing or injunctive action. (2003-97, s. 1)
§ 87-15.4. Builder designations created.
(a) A licensee who successfully completes the educational requirements for accredited builder or accredited master builder, as established by the North Carolina Builders Institute (Institute), shall be designated by the Board as a "North Carolina Certified Accredited Residential Builder" or "North Carolina Certified Accredited Master Residential Builder," respectively. The Institute shall provide to the Board written certification of those licensees who have successfully completed the requirements for the designations. The certification shall remain in effect as long as: (i) the licensee's license is in effect pursuant to G.S. 87-10; and (ii) the licensee completes at least eight hours of continuing education each calendar year as certified by the Institute.
(b) The Board shall approve for designation a licensee who has successfully completed a course of study, deemed by the Board to be equivalent to the educational requirements under subsection (a) of this section, offered by a community college or by another provider, and who completes the requisite number of hours of continuing education required by the Board.
(c) The Board may use all powers granted to it under this Article to enforce the provisions of this section and ensure that the designations created by this section are conferred upon and used only by a licensee who complies with the provisions of this section and any rules adopted by the Board. (2007-417, s. 1.)