The Tennessee General Assembly has recently made changes to statutes which may impact you as a holder of a license with the Tennessee Contractor’s Board. These new changes as set out in the following Public Chapters specifically amend the Tennessee Code Annotated as follows:
Public Chapter No. 180, amends Tenn. Code Ann. § 62-6-120(a)(2), to permit the Board for Licensing Contractors discretion in deciding whether a person, firm or corporation that engages in unlicensed contracting is eligible to receive a license. Accordingly, the Board may deem the person ineligible to receive a license until six (6) months after the date the person, firm or corporation engaged or offered to engage in contracting without proper licensure.
Public Chapter No. 211, amends Tenn. Code Ann. § 62-6-127, effectively deleting the licensing exemption that previously applied to any county having a population of not less than eight thousand six hundred (8,600) nor more than eight thousand nine hundred (8,900), according to the 1990 federal census or any subsequent federal census.
Public Chapter No. 355, amends Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 62-6-102, 103 and 605, relative to licensing requirements. This change specifically requires a contractor to have a contractor’s license even if the contractor is working as a subcontractor when performing a roofing project where the total cost of the project is Twenty-Five Thousand ($25,000.00) Dollars or more.
Public Chapter No. 424, amends Tenn. Code Ann. § 50-6-411, relative to worker’s compensation law by adding a new subsection. The new subsection states that a construction services provider will be in violation of the section if the provider misclassifies employees to avoid premium calculations by concealing information pertinent to the computation and application of an experience rating modification factor; or by materially understating or concealing the amount of the provider’s payroll, the number of the provider’s employees, or any of the provider’s employee’s duties. The chapter also provides penalties for violations to be enforced by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development or the Commissioner’s designee.
Public Chapter No. 469, amends Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 62-6-102 and 103, relative to the construction industry. The new law states that no contractor shall engage in a construction project unless the contractor has a monetary limit sufficient to engage in that project. However, the law also allows the Board to grant a ten (10%) percent tolerance on license monetary limitations. Additionally, the chapter states that no lien shall be available to any person, firm, or corporation engaged in construction in violation of the chapter. The public chapter also amends Title 66, chapter 11, section 1 relative to when a lien on real property takes effect. Liens currently take effect upon visible commencement of operations and the definition of visible commencement of operations has been amended to exclude the placement of utility lines.
Public Chapter No. 138, amends Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 56-1-302 and 308, which will allow the Division of Regulatory Boards to implement a system for the electronic submission of complaints and applications and for notifications, including those of renewals and rulemakings, to be sent electronically. The public chapter also makes payment of a civil penalty assessed after a hearing under the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, in title 4, chapter 5, a prerequisite to the renewal of any license issued by the Division of Regulatory Boards unless such penalty is stayed or acceptable arrangements are made for payment of the civil penalty prior to the renewal.
Public Chapter No. 122, amends Tenn. Code Ann. § 4-3-1304, relative to boards and commissions. This chapter requires that each board attached to the Division of Regulatory Boards establish a procedure to expedite the issuance of a license, certification, or permit for a person licensed in another state to perform those services who is a qualifying spouse of a member of the armed forces or is a qualifying member of the armed forces applying within one hundred eighty (180) days of retirement, receiving a discharge other than a dishonorable discharge, or being released from active duty into a reserve component of the United States armed forces. The chapter also requires the commissioner and each regulatory board to accept military education, training, or experience completed by certain qualifying persons towards the qualification to receive a license or certification if the education, training, or experience is determined to be substantially equivalent.