Construction Defect Journal Archives

A License to Sue: Appellate Court Upholds Condition of Statute that a Contracting Party Must Hold a Valid Contractor’s License to Pursue Action for Recovery of Payment for Contracting Services

June 21, 2017
Omar Parra & Jesse M. Sullivan - Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP

California Business & Professions Code section 7031(a) requires a party to have contractor’s license in order to maintain an action for compensation for services performed for which a contractor’s license is needed. In Phoenix Mechanical Pipeline, Inc. v. Space Exploration Technologies Corp., No. B269186 (2017 WL 2544856) (Cal. Ct. App. June 13, 2017), the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District considered the scope of this statute in denying, in part, Phoenix Mechanical Pipeline, Inc.’s (“Phoenix Pipeline”) appeal of a trial court ruling granting Space Exploration Technologies Corporation’s (“SpaceX”) demurrer to Phoenix Pipeline’s second amended complaint, without leave to amend.

Phoenix Pipeline filed the underlying lawsuit for, among other claims, breach of contract and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing arising from an agreement with SpaceX for Phoenix Pipeline to perform various plumbing, concrete removal and electrical services. Phoenix Pipeline alleged SpaceX paid for such services from 2010 to October 2013, but failed to pay Phoenix for services performed from October 2013 to August 2014, totaling just over $1,000,000. According to Phoenix Pipeline, this work was performed pursuant to a series of invoices, which constituted individual agreements between SpaceX and Phoenix Pipeline.

Reprinted courtesy of Omar Parra, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP and Jesse M. Sullivan, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP
Mr. Parra may be contacted at oparra@hbblaw.com
Mr. Sullivan may be contacted at jsullivan@hbblaw.com



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