Attorney General: Contractors have deadline to re-register under Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act
Attorney General Kathleen Kane is reminding contractors to re-register with the Attorney General’s Office, in order to comply with the Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act, which took effect July 1, 2009. The majority of contractors’ registrations will need to be renewed by July 1, 2013 so they may legally continue to perform home improvement services.
In 2008, the Pennsylvania Legislature passed the Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act. The law requires that all contractors who perform $5,000 or more in home improvements in a year must register with the Attorney General’s Office. Every two years, contractors are required to re-register within 30 days of their original registration date’s expiration.
The law also requires contractors to maintain minimum insurance coverage and use contracts that contain important information about home projects, including the start date and completion date, a description of work being performed and consumers’ rights under the law.
The Attorney General’s Office has worked to ensure that the registration process is as quick and easy as possible for contractors. Re-registration can be done online at https://hic.attorneygeneral.gov/login.aspx or by submitting a completed application form to Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Consumer Protection, ATTN: Home Improvement Contractor Registration, 15th Floor, Strawberry Square, Harrisburg, PA, 17120. Forms are available online or by calling 717-772-2425.
Contractors are encouraged to re-register online and will continue to use their previously issued registration number. A registration certificate will also be issued by mail.
Kane also reminded contractors that the registration number must be included in any advertisements, contracts, estimates, and proposals that you use in Pennsylvania. In addition to registering with the Office of Attorney General, home improvement contractors must review HICPA and use contracts that comply with the requirements set forth in the law. Failure to comply with HICPA can lead to civil and criminal penalties; and, may result in your contract being voidable and unenforceable.