• You’d Better Get That License
  • October 31, 2017 | Author: David H. Fishman
  • Law Firm: Gordon Feinblatt LLC - Baltimore Office
  • Visnic Improved Properties, LLC was a general contractor for construction of a house. It hired Plus One - MidAtlantic Co., Inc. as the masonry subcontractor. Plus One billed Visnic for $117,608.00 for its work, but was paid only $9,196.00. It filed an action for a mechanic’s lien against both the homeowner and the general contractor.

    Investigation disclosed that Plus One did not have a Maryland subcontractor’s license at the time it did its work, and both the homeowner and Visnic refused to pay. The Court in Prince George’s County dismissed the case for a mechanic’s lien, but commented that if the subcontractor had obtained the proper license by the time payment was due, or prior to the Court’s decision – the subcontractor would be entitled to receive payment from Visnic. The Court nevertheless dismissed the case.

    On appeal, Plus One - MidAtlantic Co., Inc. v. Visnic Improved Properties, LLC, No. 2214, Sept. Term, 2015, 2017 WL 1251090 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. Decided April 5, 2017), the Court of Special Appeals decided that because Plus One had obtained the proper subcontractor’s license before the decision was made by the trial court, the case should not have been dismissed. It also turned out that the homeowner had made payment for Plus One’s work to Visnic; if the claim of Plus One was denied, it would result in a windfall to Visnic, the general contractor. Therefore, the Court of Special Appeals held that the dismissal of the case was wrong, and it should go back to the trial court for further proceedings, presumably to decide if there was any other reason why Plus One should not get paid.