How to Verify a Licensed Electrical Contractor
Validate your Contractor’s ECRA/ESA licence number when hiring for electrical work
MISSISSAUGA, ON (March 6, 2020) – On February 4, 2020, Mr. Daniel Smith, was convicted by the Ontario Court of Justice, for operating an electrical contracting business without a licence and failing to apply for an electrical inspection. Mr. Smith was sentenced to a total fine of $6,875 including victim surcharge. Mr. Smith was also ordered to pay restitution to the homeowner in the amount of $1,000.
In August 2018, Mr. Smith was advertising electrical services as a Licensed Electrical Contractor on an online classified advertising services platform and fraudulently used the ECRA/ESA licence number that belonged to a Licensed Electrical Contractor. Through advertising, Mr. Smith was hired to perform electrical work at a residential address in Mississauga. Mr. Smith did not request an inspection of the electrical work he performed with the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA).
“ESA wants to advise homeowners to take the extra step and verify that the ECRA/ESA licence number that should be on your electrical contractor’s estimate and advertisements matches the licence number on ESA’s Contractor Look-Up Tool,” says Dr. Joel Moody, Chief Public Safety Officer, Electrical Safety Authority. “Your home should be a safe place where you don’t need to worry about faulty wiring or incorrectly installed pot lights.”
Tips to Avoid Fraud
Here are a few ways Ontarians can avoid falling victim to unlicensed contractors:
- Ask for an electrician’s ECRA/ESA licence number, it should be on their truck and estimate.
- An unlicensed contractor may falsely claim they have a licence number. Always verify an ECRA/ESA licence number or look them up by company name at findacontractor.esasafe.com.
- Do not trust a contractor if they ask you to take out the notification of work (permit) in your name with the Electrical Safety Authority. Hire a Licensed Electrical Contractor for any electrical work in Ontario.
- Avoid working with contractors that offer a discount if you pay cash, accept only cash and/or won’t provide a receipt.
- Advise your Electrical Contractor that you expect a copy of the ESA Certificate of Acceptance from them once the electrical work is complete.
To prevent unlicensed electrical contractors from continuing to put Ontarians at risk, you can report unlicensed electrical contractors through ESA’s anonymous reporting tool, or by calling 1-877-ESA-SAFE (372-7233).
Always verify a Licensed Electrical Contractor, visit findacontractor.esasafe.com.
About the Electrical Safety Authority
The Electrical Safety Authority's (ESA’s) role is to enhance public electrical safety in Ontario. As an administrative authority acting on behalf of the Government of Ontario, ESA is responsible for administering specific regulations related to the Ontario Electrical Safety Code, the licensing of Electrical Contractors and Master Electricians, electricity distribution system safety, and electrical product safety. ESA works extensively with stakeholders throughout the province on education, training and promotion to foster electrical safety across the province.
More information on the Electrical Safety Authority can be found at www.esasafe.com, through https://twitter.com/homeandsafety and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ElectricalSafetyAuthority.
For further information:
Electrical Safety Authority
905-712-7819 or Media.ESA@electricalsafety.on.ca