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license issues--grrrr

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by davidcarr87, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    Aug 17, 2010
    well, i have been trying to branch out and do lighted signs and led signs...
    butttt....im getting the run around, i call one place bout getting license, they send me here..they send me there..then they send me back to the orig person..

    grrrrrr....i have been told 8 different things by 9 people..all of which do not match anything i have found online..
    could anyone help me out with what i need to start selling/installing lighted signs in texas?!?!

    i have sold/installed a few and i did all the work myself..did 1 major sign..and i contracted out the wiring and everything..
    someone please help...not sure if this message even makes sense...so irritated

    thanks...sorry to be grouchy
     
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  2. John L

    John L Very Active Member

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    Why not ask to speak with the inspector(s) for the area you wish to provide this service? You will likely need to speak with a building inspector and an electrical inspector but there may be more.

    That inspector may be your best contact. He/she knows the full criteria of what he is inspecting for and what is required for you, the installation, and the manufactured sign to fully comply.
     
  3. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    ok thanks, i was actually looking online for the numbers of them in the county i will be doing the job in
    but i cant find anything, it is a tiny tiny town..sooo...
    im going tomorrow to the court house to ask about permits and where i can find the inspector(s)

    thanks
     
  4. John L

    John L Very Active Member

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    Honest, thats what we do all the time. Go right to the man.
     
  5. SlightlyChilled

    SlightlyChilled Very Active Member

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    Hell
    And bring cash that will win them over ;)
     
  6. BROWNDOG

    BROWNDOG Premium Subscriber

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    The easiest way to catch a cop is speeding down the highway, jsut start putting up the sign and theyll find you, then beg for forgiveness
     
  7. raider

    raider Member

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    I work for a small town - if the install is within the city limits and the town is small, there's probably a simple building permit application and small fee. Just call the local city hall. I don't think there are too many county inspectors in Texas except maybe in the metro areas.
     
  8. Westcoast Sign Guy

    Westcoast Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    You need to contact your state contractors license board and see if you qualify, it's usually 8 good years of experience. 4 years as an apprentice, 4 as a journeymen.

    That's what it is in CA anyway.

    If you are doing this work now now and subcontracting out to a qualified/licensed individual, then you are breaking the law and doing illegal work by posing as a contractor

    http://www.license.state.tx.us/
     
  9. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    westcoast, i dont have 8 years..lol
    i am just starting the company, and i have minor electrical exp.
    does anyone else know of any way i can get into the lighted sign side of this field ??
    everyone is calling me wanting me to do their lighted signs, when all i have been doing are just small jobs and coroplast signs etc..
    pelase help
     
  10. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    I would imagine if you don't have the experience, that won't be an answer you want to put on your resume.

    Just having the desire and customers to justify going into or expanding your business is not a reason you will be granted to 'Open Up Shop'.

    Probably your prices and designs will get you all the work you want, but once you have the necessary experience, training, credentials, licensing and equipment, you won't fall into that category any longer. Once you're legal, your prices will go up and then you'll find yourself complaining about all the hacks trying to weasel their way into your field. It's a vicious circle. Be careful, be be honest. If someone gets hurt.... you could lose everything without proper backing.
     
  11. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    well i just got an email from Jim Odom - License And Permit Specialist Three
    Texas Department Of Licensing & Regulation
    and as much as i wanted to stay a 1 man show it looks like i may need to "employ" a installer...covers the legal issues :D



    Mr. Carr:

    Are you inquiring about the Electrical Sign Contractor License? If so,
    here are the requirements for that license:

    ● Electrical Sign Contractor

    - You must be a licensed master electrician or master sign electrician,
    or employ a licensed master electrician or master sign electrician;
    - Maintain the required limits of business liability insurance:

    (1) Minimum $300,000 per occurrence (combined for property damage and
    bodily injury);
    (2) Minimum $600,000 aggregate (total amount the policy will pay for
    property damage and bodily injury coverage); and
    (3) Minimum $300,000 aggregate for products and completed operations.

    - Meet the statutory requirements for workers compensation coverage.

    The law defines Electrical Sign Contracting as:

    "Electrical sign contracting" means the business of designing,
    manufacturing, installing, connecting, reconnecting, or servicing an
    electric sign, cold cathode, neon gas tubing, or outline gas tubing, or
    altering electric sign wiring or conductors either inside or outside of
    a building.

    An Electrical Sign Contractor license would be required if you fall
    within that definition.

    If you need an application for this type of license you can go to the
    link below:

    http://www.license.state.tx.us/electricians/applications/Electrical Sign Contractor.pdf

    Please reply to this email if I can be of further assistance in this
    matter.

    Thanks.
     
  12. Westcoast Sign Guy

    Westcoast Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    That is your other option, to hire a qualified individual, the advantage of doing so will give you the ability to put your name on the license as well which earns you experience points towards putting it solely in your name. Think of it as a paying someone to teach you.

    Disadvantage, your purely responsible for putting them through a school or process if they don't already have a license but can obtain one, you'll be paying them for thier time throughout the process as well. You are also solely responsible for their **** ups too, so pick the right person. As Gino said, now your cost and charges of doing business just went up.

    Other option, go the old fashion route. Work for an electric sign company and get PAID to learn! Imagine that!



    I don't know **** about water heaters, but just because I may be able to fix my own one day and find there is a lack of mechanics in my area doesn't mean I'm going to start up a new business. A thought.
     
  13. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    or i can just do all the sales and install ...except for the wiring.
    and then have electricians bid the job, i can go with the better one..they come in and do the wiring..invoice me or the customer..and its all legal...from what i was just told by the state Electrician Program Compliance Specialist...does this sound right??

    im sure im not the only one running into this road block...am i??
     
  14. Westcoast Sign Guy

    Westcoast Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    San Diego, CA

    You're still hitting a brick wall at 100 MPH and with a Motorcycle no less.

    You can't do ANY kind of install! You can't even put a screw in a wall legally (hang a banner). The electrical sign lic, is a license above a lesser license that ALLOWS you to put a screw in a wall.

    You can't do anything that involves any kind of installation or alteration.


    It's just a matter of time for you, TSA is cracking down on this as well with the License Board. Matter of fact, since the economy is so bad this unlicensed activity has increased. Be legal, do it right, don't drag down our industry. Sleep with a piece of mind at night.
     
  15. John L

    John L Very Active Member

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    Regarding the requirement that your company must employ a licensed electrical master or licensed sign electrical master...

    I would contact state electrical licensing and ask them if the licensed master can use his license at more than one company at a time... because in many of the states we work in, the case is that they can work for only one company, to fullfill the master requirement for that company, at a time. This is a costly endeaver unless YOU are the master, or currently hold a master lic in another state that recipricates.

    There are a lot of perks to obtaining an electrical masters license. Go through the requirements and you will forget all about the sign business, really.
     
  16. davidcarr87

    davidcarr87 Member

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    they told me if i can find someone that owns more that 50% of their company i can have them work for me atleast 32 hours a week on paper....said wages could be $0 a year it doesnt matter..

    and if i had someone working for me i could pay them by the job..but would have to be on paper that their working 32 hours a week...he kinda confused me..
    im lost about all of this, and thinking i will just stick with everything i was doing..besides the lighted signs..lol
    it was much less of a head ach, i just emailed the customer telling them i could change out their pan face no prob and do some repair on their mounting poles..but they will have to find someone else for the led sign... :(
     
  17. mark in tx

    mark in tx Very Active Member

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    Harker Heights, Texas
    Why don't you contact the Texas Sign Association and get the right answers.
     
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