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Question DetailsAsked on 7/24/2012

Where do I go (online?call?) to find out for myself, if a contractor is actually licensed and bonded?

I would like to hire a contractor (from Angie's List) for a painting job. Their ad claims they are licensed and bonded, but I have no idea how to find out if this is so. The ad also shows the BBB symbol, but when I lfind them on that site, they are rated, but it also shows they are NOT BBB accredited. I am leery of asking the contractor directly for proof of licensing and bonding, because it's possible they could phony up copies, and show them as proof. I need to know where I can find this information for myself. What agencies do I call or write?

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1 Answer

Voted Best Answer

Hi, ronay55,

You're in luck. We did a story on with tips on hiring a contractor in NYC. You can also do an instant license check on the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs website.


Answered 8 years ago by HughV


Do the look up but also go to the section to see if they pay into Workman's compensation. In my state every worker except the owner has to be covered if they fall or get hurt on the job. But don't stop there. Look up infractions. A contractor may have a few when they 1st form the company. Check to be sure that all fines have been paid.

Now check with people who have used this contractor. You could use the contractor's list but it may be friends or relatives that are represented. This is where I failed. Ask people you know if they have used this person.

My contractor was being sued by 6 people during the time I hired him.
I got a contractor that was dodging the law. My suggestion would be to
check the city permits list and you will see the names and addresses of people who obtained a permit under the contractor's name. I would use this as a place to start getting recommendations.

Also interview the contractor. Is he on time? Does he have the necessary paperwork to show you? Look for professionalism. Can he spell? Do you have a completion date?
These are clues to tell you if you should hire the contractor.
I learned the hard way, that I needed to do more homework before hiring a

Answered 8 years ago by gardengal7

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