LARA Issues Cease and Desist Orders Against White Lake Unlicensed Residential Builder and His Unlicensed Company

Media Contact: LARA Communications 517-335-LARA (5272)
Email: mediainfo@michigan.gov

August 8, 2019 - LARA’s Bureau of Construction Codes (BCC) issued cease and desist orders against Marty Bruce and J & L Painting and Remodeling in White Lake for violating the Michigan Occupational Code (Code) by providing residential builder services without possessing a residential builder, or residential maintenance and alteration contractor’s license, and not possessing a residential company license. Bruce is the owner of J & L Painting and Remodeling, an unlicensed entity.

An investigation prompted by a complaint against Bruce and J & L Painting and Remodeling, disclosed violations of the Code:

  • not possessing applicable licenses
  • entering into an agreement with a consumer for performing residential building services regulated by the Code

The investigation also disclosed that Bruce:

  • represented himself to the homeowners that he was licensed
  • partially completed construction of a three-car attached garage (to include roofing, concrete, siding, painting, plumbing and electrical work) with different dimensions than in the plan -- without the homeowners’ knowledge or consent
  • demanded more money in addition to the $100,000 provided on the handwritten estimate
  • failed to complete the project

The cease and desist orders prohibit Bruce from practicing as a residential builder and prohibit J & L Painting and Remodeling from operating as a residential builder company without possessing applicable licenses issued by LARA. The cease and desist orders also notified Bruce and J & L Painting and Remodeling of their right to request a hearing within 30 days in response to the orders. Violations of the Code may lead to administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions, including a maximum fine of $25,000 per violation. A person not licensed under the Code as a residential builder who willfully violates the Code may be subject to criminal penalties.

"Before you hire anyone to perform any kind of building or remodeling work to your home, be sure they are a reputable residential builder or building company that is properly licensed with the State of Michigan,” said BCC Director Keith Lambert. “Verify their current license status and check for any consumer complaints or disciplinary action by looking it up on the LARA website or calling 517-241-9316. Homeowners should also check with their building department to determine what construction permits are required, and that the residential builder has obtained them.”

Lambert also reminds homeowners to be cautious when entering into a contract for building or remodeling. Carefully read and clearly understand all the terms and conditions of the contract. Clearly document a mutual understanding of any changes being made to the contract. Closely monitor the progress of work being done and that it meets contract specifications.

Residential builders and maintenance and alteration contractors, electricians, plumbers and mechanical contractors are licensed by LARA’s Bureau of Construction Codes and must have a license that corresponds to the work to be done. Before entering into a building or renovation project, Michigan consumers are encouraged to verify license information by going to https://www.lara.michigan.gov/colaLicVerify/. Consumers may contact BCC at 517-241-9316 or via email at ara-bcc-licensing@michigan.gov and request that the bureau run a license check for you. Consumers are reminded that there is no replacement for their own due diligence.

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