July 24, 2012
Re: Contractor’s Registration Act
The League wanted to remind municipalities of the requirements of the Contractors’ Registration Act, found at N.J.S.A. 56:8-136 et. seq.
The Division of Consumer Affairs has indicated that some municipalities have enacted ordinances or regulations that require the licensing or registration of home improvement contractors, particularly landscaping contractors, with the municipality.
The Contractors’s Registration Act was enacted partly to prevent home improvement contractors from having to register with more than one agency. Home improvements are broadly defined. According to the Act, the only agency that may require home improvement contractors to register or to be licensed is the State.
N.J.S.A. 56:8-147 states: “This act shall supersede any municipal ordinance or regulation that provides for the licensing or registration of contractors or for the protection of homeowners by bonds or warranties required to be provided by contractors, exclusive of those required by water, sewer, utility, or land use ordinances or regulations.”
Ordinances or regulations that requires a home improvement contractor to register with the municipality are therefore preempted by the Act and are unenforceable.
If you have an ordinance similar to this, we urge you to discuss it with your municipal attorney. If you have any questions or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact Staff Attorney Matthew Weng at 609-695-3481 ext 137 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Very truly yours,
William G. Dressel, Jr.