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Dealing with a licenced contractor

Know your recourses

You dealt with a contractor who held a licence and entered into a contract with him. Despite these precautions, your contractor may fail to live up to his obligations. Here are some of the things you can do to resolve the situation.

In order to file a bond claim, you must have done business with a contractor who held a licence at the time you signed the contract or when work was carried out, and who failed to carry out his obligations. You must also submit your claim within the prescribed timeframe.

NOTE: If the contract related to a new house or condo covered by the Guarantee Plan for New Residential Buildings, the procedures involved are different. Go to the Guarantee Plan’s websiteThis link open an external website of the Régie du bâtiment du Québec in a new window. for applicable coverage.

Recourse involving the contractor

Step 1: Try to come to an agreement with the contractor

Most contractors are sensitive to their clients’ dissatisfaction, since their company’s reputation is important to them and they want to keep their clientele. Contact your contractor immediately and try to resolve the situation.

Take note of all your discussions with your contractor (calls, conversations, letters, emails, etc.) and hold on to them. These elements could help you build your case if more extensive measures become necessary.

Once you’ve obtained a ruling

Once you’ve obtained a ruling in your favour, seek compensation from your contractor. You can also file a bond claim.

Step 2: Send a formal demand letter immediately

If you have not been able to come to an understanding, send your contractor a formal demand letter immediately by registered mail. For information on the information you must include with your letter, go to the website of the Ministry of JusticeThis link open an external website of the Régie du bâtiment du Québec in a new window..

Step 3: Obtain a judgement

If the contractor has not followed up on your formal demand letter within the specified timeframe, the next step is to obtain a ruling from the courts confirming that there has been injury and, if need be, establishing the compensation. Where should your claim be filed?

Once you have obtained a ruling in your favour, attempt to obtain compensation from your contractor. You can also file a claim against the licence security.

Step 4: Attempt to be compensated by your contractor

If you have obtained a ruling in your favour but the contractor fails to pay the amount required within the timeframe specified in the judgement, you can, for example, resort to forced executionThis link open an external website of the Régie du bâtiment du Québec in a new window. procedures to seize his movable property.

Appealing to the RBQ

Filing a claim against the licence bond

If your contractor has failed to meet his obligations and the measures you have taken to resolve the situation have not yielded results, you can file a claim against the licence security.

New house or condo

If the contract relates to a new house or condo covered by the Guarantee Plan for New Residential Buildings, the procedures involved are different. For information on applicable coverage, go to the Guarantee Plan’sThis link open an external website of the Régie du bâtiment du Québec in a new window. website.

This bond is a financial guarantee which most contractors licenced by the Régie du bâtiment du Québec, the Corporation des maîtres mécaniciens en tuyauterie du Québec or the Corporation des maîtres électriciens du Québec are required to obtain. It serves to compensate clients if work stipulated in the contract is poorly executed, not executed or not completed.

Note that if your claim involves a contractor who holds an itinerant merchant’s permit, your file will also be forwarded to the Office de la protection du consommateur.

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