Régie du bâtiment du Québec

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Searching for a contractor or a licence number: consult the Licence holders' repertory.

Searching for a contractor or a licence number: consult the Licence holders' repertory.

This content in English is intended for individuals covered by the exceptions to the Charter of the French language and its regulations.

Work requiring a licence

In Québec, anyone who carries out construction work or has construction work done must be licensed by the Régie du bâtiment du Québec (RBQ), unless exempted by law. 

You must have a licence if you are:

  • A building contractor who is carrying out work or having work done for a third party, or who submits bids, seeks out clients or places advertisements in newspapers or elsewhere.
  • A promoter who enters into a contract to sell a building (house, condominium or other) or a road that they built or had built, or proposes to build or have built.
  • The owner of a building, a facility intended for public use, or an installation that is subject to the Building Act, who is carrying out construction work yourself on your own account. In this case, you must have an owner-builder's licence.

Who is considered to be a construction contractor?

According to article 7 of the Building Act, a person who, for another person, carries out or has carried out construction work for profit is considered to be a contractor.

It is important to know that the interpretation given to the words “for profit” is not limited to its strict accounting meaning. It also means “for his benefit”, “for the benefit of”.

Therefore, a person who carries out or has carried out construction work on behalf of another person is considered to be a contractor and must hold a licence when the work in question profits him or provides a (direct or indirect) benefit. Here are some examples:

  • John agrees to take part in some construction work at Joanna’s house without being paid. In exchange, Joanna, who is a trained accountant, agrees to do John’s accounting and prepare his income tax returns. Since John benefits from this arrangement, he needs a contractor’s licence to carry out the work.
  • Mustapha asks Mark to help him tear down his garage. In exchange, he agrees to let him keep the materials he recovers, to either sell or use them for other purposes (building furniture, etc.) Since the demolition work benefits Mark, he will need to hold a contractor’s licence.
  • Adriana owns a building with 8 housing units. She agrees to reduce Jack’s rent if he carries out renovation and maintenance work on the building’s common areas. Since Jack benefits from the situation (reduced rent), he will need to hold a contractor’s licence to carry out the work.
  • Sinh helps his brother repaint his balcony. Once the work has been completed, Sinh goes home with, as his sole benefit, the feeling of a job well done. Since his brother’s gratitude is not considered to be a benefit, he does not need to hold a licence.

Severe fines

Any person who carries out work without a licence at any time is guilty of an infraction and therefore liable to a severe fine. Major fines can also be imposed if a licence-holder and their subcontractors do not hold the proper licence subclasses.

Fine amounts vary depending on the type of infraction. To know the amount of the fines for each type of infraction, go to Holding the correct licence.

Anyone who witnesses construction work being performed by someone who does not hold the appropriate licence can report this to the RBQ using the online form Filing a complaint relating to unlicensed work.

Additional resources

Licence: If you wish to obtain a licence, go to All the steps for obtaining a licence.

Workforce competency certificate or card:The qualifications and skills of the workforce is under the Commission de la construction du Québec’s (CCQ) jurisdiction, not the RBQ’s. For more information, consult the:

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