A person often needs to find a licensed contractor to assist with tasks such as home construction and repairs, electrical work, or plumbing repairs. However, anyone can claim they are a licensed, professional tradesperson whether this is true or not. A contractor license search allows individuals to verify whether a contractor holds a license before being hired and work begins.
Contractors are licensed by the state or states in which they work, often in specific areas of expertise. Each state sets certain standards for licensing, so a contractor licensed in one state does not automatically meet the licensing requirements in another.
Many states require contractors to pass specific written or skills tests before being licensed. Contractors must complete these tests in the state where the license will be obtained. Once all testing is completed successfully and supporting documentation is provided, a contractor must post a state license bond. This bond is a specific amount of money which serves as financial protection in cases where customers aren't satisfied with the outcome of projects.
Public contractor license searches also offer information on current bonds and contractor license numbers.
In most cases, contractor license searches provide centralized access to all contractor regardless of specialty. They are also similar from one state to the next.