Many homeowners are very confused when it come to Workers Compensation. They listen to a contractor and they believe him. The contractor is only telling the homeowner what the contractor wants them to hear. Here is a post I found on the website for 1st. Choice Payroll Solutions.com. Hopefully homeowners will find this informative when hiring the right contractor to do work on their homes. Ron Rooker President Ron's Painting-Fort Myers
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If you are in an industry, other than construction, and have four (4) or more employees, full-time or part-time, you are required to carry workers' compensation coverage (an exempted corporate officer does not count as an employee).
If you are in the construction industry, and have one (1) or more employees (including yourself), you are required to carry workers' compensation coverage (an exempted corporate officer or member of a limited liability company does not count as an employee).
If you are a farmer, and have more than five (5) regular employees and/or twelve (12) or more other workers for seasonal agricultural labor lasting thirty (30) days or more, you are required to carry workers' compensation coverage. Reference: Section 440.02(17), Florida Statutes.
Actually your neighbor is correct, a person that advertises as a Handy Man is not licensed to do painting, electrical, plumbing, or landscaping, along with anything else in the construction trade. Here is a link to a page for MySanibel.com where you can check the list of contractors that are licensed to do anything in the construction trade on Sanibel, if your contractor is not on this list, then they are not a licensed contactor on Sanibel. Or you can call 239-472-4555, contractor licensing on Sanibel. This is also true in Lee County, Cape Coral, and Collier County, but you will have to check the local building department to see if someone is licensed. I always tell my clients to check with their local building department to clarify a contractors status. By having the proper license in their field, such as painting, they must have a competency license, this ensures that they have workers compensation along with liability insurance. Also click on the above links for Workers Compensation and this will help inform you as to what to look for when hiring your next contractor. Please remember, a contractor can advertise for anything, but it is always a good idea as a homeowner to always do your homework and educate yourself before hiring anyone to do work around your home.