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Hurricane Preparedness and Response Guide

Hurricane Trees

Pre-event Preparedness for Businesses & Professionals

Natural disasters can affect businesses and professionals in many of the same ways that families and homes are affected. It’s important for businesses and professionals to prepare for storms and other natural disasters in advance so people can get back to work as quickly as possible in the wake of a storm or other event.

Preparation Tips

  • Retrieve important records, including license copies, and store them in a watertight container in a safe place.
  • Identify essential staff for post-storm recovery and have predetermined locations to meet when conditions permit.
  • Prepare a photo or video inventory of assets and store it in a safe location.
  • Assume there will be no phone communications or banking options following a storm and make preparations in advance.
  • Ensure that your insurance policy payment is up-to-date.
  • Maintain detailed expenses for disaster recovery for possible reimbursements.

Post-event Guide

After a storm or a natural disaster, remember that work performed on your home or business should be completed by a licensed professional. State licenses offer reassurance that the person meets the standard requirements outlined in Florida law for working in a specific field.

Important Definitions

Unlicensed Activity: Unlicensed activity occurs when a person who is not licensed by the state performs or offers to perform a job or service that requires licensure in one of the professions regulated by the Division of Regulation, Division of Real Estate and Division of Certified Public Accounting. Unlicensed activity in these professions is a criminal offense and is referred to the local State Attorney.

Unlicensed Activity during a State of Emergency: Any person who engages in unlicensed construction activity as defined in Ch. 489, F.S., during a state of emergency declared by executive order of the Governor commits a felony of the third-degree. F.S. 489.127.2(c)

Consumer Protection Tips

  • Always ask to see the State of Florida license.
  • Note the license number and verify that the license is current and in good standing. To check a license, call 850-487-1395 or visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com.
  • Do not pay cash and be cautious of writing checks made payable to individuals, especially when dealing with a company.
  • Get everything in writing, including a detailed description of the work to be completed, a completion date and the total cost.
  • Be wary of individuals who only produce an “occupational license,” or corporate filing. An “occupational license” only means that the person has paid a tax receipt to the local municipality.

After a Storm – What Services Require a State License?

After a storm, clean-up may be a top priority, especially if homes or businesses are damaged. Below are some examples of common storm-related services that may or may not require a state license from DBPR. These lists are not intended to be comprehensive, and any additional or detailed questions should be directed to the Department by calling 850-487-1395.

Services Requiring a License Services Not Requiring a License
Roof Repairs Trimming or Removing a Fallen Tree
New or Replacement Roof Removing Debris
Installing New Windows Placing a Tarp on a Roof
Plumbing Repairs  
Electrical Repairs or Rewiring  


Consumers should check with their local building departments to determine if there are additional permitting and/or licensing requirements for their area. For additional licensure requirements related to construction, click here.

Verify Licenses Before You Hire or Sign a Contract

Protect yourselves from unlicensed activity. Always verify the license online or call the Customer Contact Center at 850.487.1395. DBPR also has free smartphone apps that enable consumers to search for state licenses by name or license numbers. Download the apps in the iTunes marketplace or the Android marketplace.

Report Unlicensed Activity

During a disaster the Department may dispatch teams to conduct door-to-door sweeps in conjunction with law enforcement, building departments and other state agencies. Report unlicensed activity by calling the Department’s Unlicensed Activity Program at 1.866.532.1440 or emailing ULA@dbpr.state.fl.us.

Important Links

 

1940 North Monroe Street, Tallahassee FL 32399 :: Email: Customer Contact Center :: Customer Contact Center: 850.487.1395