What Does it Mean for Roofers to be Licensed & Insured in TX?
What does it mean when a Texas roofer says that they are licensed and insured? Learn more about how these terms can help you find the right roofer for you.
When you’re looking for a roofing contractor to work on your home, office, or another building, you’ll find many options available to you. How do you know which roofing contractor to choose? In their advertising and marketing, many roofers will note they are insured and licensed.
Every roofer doing business in Texas should carry certain types of insurance coverage. Texas does not, however, require roofers to have insurance or a license to perform roofing services. A private organization known as the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas (RCAT) issues licenses to roofers who apply voluntarily, and who meet the organization’s rather strict criteria. The RCAT license demonstrates that a roofer has established experience in the industry and financial responsibility.
You may ask a roofer to provide documentation of their insurance coverage and their license status before hiring them. Read on to learn more about insurance and licensing for roofers in Texas.
Insurance for roofers
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A roofer operates a business that involves many types of risk, such as:
- Causing damage to a home or other structure
- Failing to complete a job according to the terms of the contract, whether it is their fault or not
- Injuries on the job to themselves, someone working for them, or another person
Different types of insurance coverage provide financial compensation should any of these risks become real.
This type of insurance covers damages or injuries that occur while a roofer is working. Most policies have limits on how much they will pay per incident or injury.
Worker’s compensation insurance
Worker’s compensation insurance (“worker’s comp”) pays benefits to employees who suffer on-the-job injuries. The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) oversees the state’s worker’s comp system. Private insurers provide coverage to employers subject to TDI regulations.
Texas does not require roofers and other employers to carry worker’s comp insurance. Those who don’t are supposed to file a statement with TDI every year indicating that they and their employees are not covered.
When a roofing company advertises that they are “bonded,” this means that your roofing job will be completed even if the roofer you hired cannot complete it. A bond covers the cost of the job, including materials and labor. In the event that your roofer is unable to continue work, the bonding company will hire another company to finish the job.
Licenses for roofers
Many professions and trades require a license issued by a state agency in Texas. Some agencies oversee specific trades, such as the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation issues licenses for a wide variety of trades, including barbers, cosmetologists, electricians, and massage therapists.
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Roofers do not need a license from the state of Texas to perform roofing installation or repair. Anyone may call themselves a “roofer” in Texas. With no official licensing system, the RCAT has stepped in to help experienced roofers stand out from the pack.
The RCAT issues licenses to roofers, not roofing companies, for both residential and commercial roofing. A licensed roofer may advertise that their company is “licensed.” To obtain a license, a roofer must meet the following criteria:
- Owner, managing partner, or other controlling interest in a roofing company for at least three years immediately before the application date
- Submission of a notarized application form and payment of all fees
- Evidence that the company can obtain a bond of at least $100,000
- Liability insurance coverage with a limit of at least $500,000 for a commercial roofer or $300,000 for a residential roofer
- Scores of at least 70% on two exams: (1) basic business and safety knowledge and (2) residential and/or commercial roofing
Why are licensing and insurance important?
Photo by Mark Turnauckas from Flickr [Creative Commons]
A roofer has to have been in business for themselves for at least three years before getting licensed by the RCAT. They must also be able to obtain minimum amounts of insurance coverage and bonding. A license offers reassurance that the roofer has experience in their trade, financial responsibility, and a good reputation in the community.
Insurance coverage provides assurance that you will not have to foot any bills should something go wrong. Liability and worker’s comp insurance coverage significantly reduce the chances that you could be liable for injuries or stuck with damaged property. With bonding, you won’t be left with a partially-finished job.
Get in touch with RoofCrafters
The skilled and experienced professionals at RoofCrafters provide unmatched workmanship and service in the greater Austin area. Contact us today to schedule a free roof inspection.