September 17, 2010
Unlicensed activity is a perennial concern of our licensees, and rightly so. Our licensees must meet licensing requirements, such as education, experience, criminal background checks, and various insurance requirements. These requirements ensure that only qualified professionals serve Florida's customers. Unlicensed individuals don't meet these requirements and often underbid licensed professionals and put consumers at risk—both financially and personally. We work to stop unlicensed activity year-round.
Our Division of Regulation investigates and prosecutes non-compliance with state licensing laws. In addition to our regular investigative caseload, we proactively coordinate a statewide effort to identify and prosecute unlicensed activity in specific professions. Throughout this past week, we focused on landscape architects, auctioneers, alarm contractors, community association managers, barbers, pool contractors, veterinarians, and talent agents.
One benefit of the Internet is that our investigators can scour online advertising Web sites to identify suspicious advertisements, such as those that don't disclose a license number. So far this week, we've found a high level of compliance with licensing laws in the professions we targeted.
However, we know that unlicensed activity still exists. There is no better partner in the fight against unlicensed activity than consumers. The first step to consumer protection is to determine what services require a license. Anyone can do this by visiting our home page at MyFloridaLicense.com and clicking on "What Services Require a DBPR License?" Then, check licenses by following the "Verify a License" link. If anyone suspects an individual of offering to perform services that require a license and that person does not have a license, please file a complaint with us at MyFloridaLicense.com. Thank you for assisting us in our effort.