If you are starting an HVAC, repair, electrical or plumbing business, you have to comply with a number of laws. If you don’t understand the regulations surrounding your industry, you may not be able to operate legally. While there are numerous things you have to keep in mind, take is a look at some of the most important laws to consider when you are starting your business.
Obtain a Certificate of Qualification
In most cases, you need a certificate of qualification to work in the skilled trades in Canada. This certificate shows you have completed the training or apprenticeship necessary for your industry. For example, if you want to be a plumber in British Columbia, you have to contact the Industry Training Authority.
In addition, you may also need special licences. For example, if you are doing renovation work in Toronto, you need to have a licence to work in the city, and to obtain that licence, you may need to show even more proof of your knowledge and experience than you do to perform renovation work in other parts of the country. Make sure to check the local licencing laws any time you do work in a new location.
Register for Insurance Coverage
If you run your own business in the construction industry, you have to register for mandatory insurance coverage through the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. This rule does not apply to individuals who are hired by construction companies. However, owners of construction companies as well as contractors, subcontractors or partners must obtain this coverage.
If you are a repair person, you only need this insurance if the work you do falls under the category of construction work, but you don’t need it in all cases. If you run a construction company, you have to ensure the contractors you hire have registered with the WSIB as well.
Abide by Safety Regulations
Depending on your industry, there are a range of safety-related business laws and rules you need to know. Canada’s health and safety regulations encompass everything from ensuring confined spaces are ventilated to working safely at heights. Failure to abide by these regulations may affect your safety, the safety of your employees and ultimately the profitability of your business.
Yield to Inspections
In most cases, whether you are a plumber, a construction contractor, an electrician or a professional in a similar trade, you have to get your work inspected at some point, and it’s important to know the governing body for your industry. For example, the Electrical Safety Authority in Ontario oversees electrical work in that province, including product approval inspections and safety advice.
In other cases, you may have seek approval or abide by the safety regulations of a group that focuses on specific types of construction projects. For example, the Technical Standards & Safety Authority oversees construction projects in a range of categories that includes ski lifts, amusement devices and upholstered items.