Frequently Asked Questions

General & Mechanical Contractor Questions Regarding Initial Application for Licensure:

Who is my qualifying party?

The qualifying party is the individual who has been issued a certificate to qualify an entity for a license by passing the examination in a license classification or subclassification.

Who is my primary qualifying party?

The primary qualifying party is a qualifying party employed full time in a responsible management position with the licensed entity who has been designated by the licensee as the principal individual responsible for directing or reviewing work performed by the licensee in a particular license classification or subclassification.

Whose net worth should be reflected on the financial statement? The Company or Individual?

The financial statement should be in the name of the applicant, which is the name in which you will conduct your business (i.e., sign contracts, advertise, etc.). If you apply as a corporation, LLC, LLP, etc., the financial statement must be in that entity's name.

Can I use the financial statement of the parent company?

Yes; You must also submit a letter from the parent company stating that the entity is a wholly owned subsidiary.

Can I submit a surety bond instead of a financial statement?

(A) Yes; In lieu of providing a financial statement showing a minimum net worth for a license group as required by Section 40-11-260, an applicant may provide a surety bond from a surety authorized to transact surety business in this State in an amount of two times the required net worth for the applicant's license group with his initial or renewal application. The required bond amounts are in parenthesis:

Group 1 General Contractor ($20,000)

Group 1 Mechanical Contractor ($7,000)

Group 2 General Contractor ($80,000)

Group 2 Mechanical Contractor ($20,000)

Group 3 General Contractor ($200,000)

Group 3 Mechanical Contractor ($40,000)

Group 4 General Contractor ($350,000)

Group 4 Mechanical Contractor ($80,000)

Group 5 General Contractor ($500,000)

Group 5 Mechanical Contractor ($400,000)

(B) The above surety bond must: (1) be continuous in form and must be maintained in effect for as long as the applicant maintains the license issued by the department or until the applicant submits a financial statement showing that he meets the net worth requirements for his license group as provided in Section 40-11-260; (2) list the State of South Carolina as oblige for the bond; (3) be for the benefit of any person who is damaged by an act or omission of the applicant constituting a breach of construction contract or a contract for the furnishing of labor, materials, or professional services for construction undertaken by the applicant, or by any unlawful act or omission of the applicant in performing construction; and (4) be in addition to, and not in lieu of, any other surety bond required of the applicant by law or regulation, or by any party to a contract with the applicant. (5) provide for bond cancellation by the Surety Company only by notification to the board and the applicant thirty days prior to cancellation.

Can I submit a reviewed financial statement in lieu of an audited financial statement for a Group 5 unlimited status initial application

No; An audited financial statement is required for all initial applications for Group 5 unlimited status and first time upgrades to the Group 5 unlimited status.

Can our in-house CPA prepare our financial statement?

Yes

What is net worth?

Assets minus liabilities equals net worth.

Do I need to submit the cover letter from the CPA who prepared my financial statement with my license application?

Yes; Submit the letter with compiled, reviewed and audited financial statements.

I am applying for a license through reciprocity with Georgia. Georgia licenses the individuals - not the entities. What should I list in the applicant field on the application?

The name in which you conduct business, advertise, etc.

I was issued a license under the Group 1 Grandfather Clause. What do I need to do to upgrade my license?

You must pass the appropriate technical exam and then submit a Revision Application (Doc #180).

General & Mechanical Contractor Questions Regarding Renewal Applications:

Who is my qualifying party?

The qualifying party is the individual who has been issued a certificate to qualify an entity for a license by passing the examination in a license classification or subclassification.

Who is my primary qualifying party?

The primary qualifying party is a qualifying party employed full time in a responsible management position with the licensed entity who has been designated by the licensee as the principal individual responsible for directing or reviewing work performed by the licensee in a particular license classification or subclassification.

What does "classification” mean beside the qualifying party certificate?

This is the classification of the exam the qualifying party passed: i.e., Building, General Roofing, Plumbing, Air Conditioning, etc.

Why is the license number listed on my renewal application different than the number listed on my certificate?

The number listed on your qualifying party certificate is not your license number. Look on your wallet card for your license number. The license number belongs to the entity that your qualifying party certificate is associated with. The qualifying party certificate represents the qualifying party's exam information - not the licensee information.

Why is the license limitation listed on my renewal different than the limitation listed on my qualifying party certificate?

The qualifying party certificate represents the exam passed (limited or unlimited) - not the dollar limitation of your license. The financial group dollar limitation is based on the license entity's financial statement and net worth submission.

If I just got my license issued or upgraded recently, do I still need to submit a financial statement?

Yes. You must submit an acceptable financial statement depending on the licensing group you are trying to upgrade to. You must provide an acceptable financial statement with a balance sheet dated no more than twelve months before the date of the license issuance, renewal, or revision.

Have the requirements to upgrade to unlimited Group 5 changed recently?

No. The financial statement requirements listed on the renewal form for unlimited Group 5 are for renewals only. You still must submit an audited financial statement the initial time you upgrade to unlimited Group 5.

Will you accept a compiled financial statement instead of a reviewed financial statement for licensees currently in Group 5?

No. The law specifically states a reviewed financial statement in required. No exceptions will be made.

What if I don't want to submit a reviewed financial statement or I don't meet the required net worth for Group 5?

You may submit a self prepared financial statement (signed and notarized) and write on the renewal form beside the current classification/limitation that you want to downgrade to a lower limit and indicate what limit you desire.

If I downgrade to a lower limit, what is required to upgrade back to Group 5?

To upgrade back to Group 5 you must submit a revision document (180) along with an Audited Financial Statement as outlined in Section 40-11-260 (D).

Does my renewal application have to be notarized?

Yes.

Does it have to be notarized by a South Carolina notary?

No.

If my CPA or Public Accountant prepared my financial statement does it have to be signed and notarized?

No. As long as you include the cover sheet from the CPA or Public Accountant.

Do I have to use the financial statement form that came with my renewal application?

No. You may use other forms or generate a balance sheet using your program. However, if it is self prepared, it still needs to be signed and notarized.

Who do I make my check payable to?

S.C. Contractors Licensing Board.

General & Mechanical Contractor Questions Regarding Compliance Issues:

How do I obtain an initial complaint form?

You may download the initial complaint form directly from the Internet, or call the Fax On Demand phone line at (888) 269-7646, to have Document #110 (pdf) faxed to your fax machine.

If an owner of a commercial/industrial plant is adding on or remodeling, can he use his own employees (i.e., maintenance staff) to do the work?

No, not if the work exceeds $5,000. If the plant owner has an employee and the employee has a commercial license, he could contract with the plant to do the work. The plant owner cannot tell him not to meet code to save money. He must obtain a building permit under his license and be responsible for all work performed. If the licensed employee wanted to hire plant employees or allow them to do the work to perform work that is covered under his license, he would have to supervise their work and be responsible for their work.

Did the Contractor's Board adopt the South Carolina Residential Construction Standards?

Yes-The South Carolina Residential Construction Standards apply to any Contractor's permit pulled for Residential Construction after January 1, 2015. Residential Construction Standards are guidelines used in analyzing initial complaints along with the Contractor's Board's statutes and regulations.