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March 18, 2013

The Law and Your Home

Remodeling and the Law

What kind of state and local laws apply to contractors?

State laws often are modeled after federal laws, and states and local agencies are much more apt to pursue a small contractor who may have violated them.

Some state laws specifically target dishonest contractors, making it a crime to misrepresent the terms of a home repair contract, deceive people into signing one, damage someone's property to drum up home repair business, or charge an unconscionable fee for home repair services.

Some laws provide such punishments as suspension or revocation of the contractor's license, both criminal and civil penalties, and punitive damages against the contractor.

For information about legal protections and enforcement options in your state, contact your state or local consumer protection agency, or the consumer fraud division of the local prosecutor's office.

>>Which federal laws are applicable to remodeling projects?
>>What protection do I have once I sign a contract?
>>What kind of state and local laws apply to contractors?
>>What's the best way to guard against swindlers?
>>How do I find a reputable contractor?
>>Should I have a written contract with the contractor?
>>What should the contract include?
>>What should I watch out for when the job begins?
>>What can I do if the contractor violates the contract?

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