Specialty Contractor Laws

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What is a Specialty Contractor?

A specialty contractor is a type of craftsman who specializes in a specific field of construction or trade.  They generally require a business license in order to practice their craft, and in order to hold themselves out as specialists in their field.  Many people hire specialty contractors in order to perform very specific tasks or to help maximize their budget on a project. 

Specialty contractors are typically also independent contractors since their work can be very specific.  Sometimes, however, they may be working as an in-house specialist for a larger company.  They can be hired separately depending on the construction needs of the client, or may be hired as part of an overall team of workers.

What are Some Examples of Work Done by Specialty Contractors?

Specialty contracts can perform a variety of work tasks, which may include work on:

Most specialty contractors focus on the installation of various systems, though they can also be responsible for other tasks such as maintenance, repairs, and upgrades.  Basically, any type of job that requires a license to perform is usually classified as specialty contractor work under most state and local business laws.

Can Specialty Contractors Be Held Liable for Unsatisfactory Work?

Definitely- many claims are filed each year against specialty contractors for injuries and property damage caused by negligence.  In order to hold the specialty contractor liable for negligence, it’s necessary to prove that they had a duty of care to the party, that they breached this duty of care, and that their breach was the cause of measurable losses.

For example, if a specialty contractor knew that they were supposed to install a special type of insulated wire, but instead installed un-insulated wire, they might be held liable for damage or injuries that the wires might cause later on (such as an electrical fire).

As mentioned, specialty contractors might be legally connected with a larger company.  In such cases, it may be necessary to hire their employer or business manager through vicarious liability laws.  They can also be found liable for conducting business without a proper license.

Lastly, breach of contract claims are commonly filed against specialty contracts.  For instance, breach of contract lawsuit may be filed if a specialty contractor fails to complete their project within the timeframe stated in a contract.

Do I Need a Lawyer if I Have Legal Issues Involving a Specialty Contractor?

Specialty contractors can often be an important part of a building or construction project.  However, it’s possible to encounter legal disputes or contentions with a specialty contractor.  You may wish to contact a qualified lawyer in your area if you have any questions or inquiries regarding a dispute with a specialty contractor.  Your attorney can advise you on your legal options for recovering damages, and can provide you with sound legal representation in court.

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Last Modified: 11-09-2012 11:22 AM PST

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