What are the legal implications for contractors who work without permits?

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Posted by: from Newmarket
6/1/2014 at 10:41:29 PM

I recently read a well written article here on the importance of getting proper permits before beginning a job or project. It was a well written article and I certainly agree with all of the points.

However, the article was written for the benefit of customers and potential customers and thus designed to motivate the customer to get permits.

Having said this, I doubt that there is not a contractor out there who has not on occasion proceeded with a job without the proper permits. While I always recommend that the customer get the permits, many times customer won't bother once they realize all of the hoops they have to jump through (such as all drawings being signed off by an architect or engineer and the costs associated with hiring such a professional even for the simplest of drawings) and ask that I proceed at their direction without permits. At this point, I always let them know that if I do so and an Inspector shows up telling me to stop working, I will stop immediately.

So my query is about legal implications for Contractors who do proceed with jobs without the proper permits even after explaining to the customer the importance of getting them (and, when we are going through a dry spell in our work, we can certainly be tempted to just go ahead).

Anyone have any thoughts on this?


Lone Wolf Contracting

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Date/Time7/24/2014 at 8:03:47 AM


In most cases you will be ordered to stop work and apply for a permit. the permit cost will be doubled and any planning or development fees will also be doubled. you may also have to completely tear down the work you have done or at least open up the walls etc. for inspection. if you are a frequent offender i could see more fines in place.

I suggest to all contractors to take the course called General legal process, it is part of the course you need for your BCIN.



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