Albany-based builder Blair Cole has been convicted in the North Shore District Court of two charges of falsely claiming to be a licensed building practitioner and fined $5,000 and ordered to pay court costs and $1,296 in reparation.
It is an offence against section 314 of the Building Act 2004 for a person to claim to be licensed to carry out or supervise restricted building work, while not being licensed.
Mr Cole pleaded guilty to both charges, which were brought by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Occupational Licensing Team.
“Mr Cole, who trades as Akoranga Construction Limited, ran numerous advertisements in local papers falsely claiming to be a licensed practitioner and displayed the Licensed Building Practitioner (LBP) logo on his business card, despite never holding an LBP license,” says Investigations Team Leader Simon Thomas.
“Furthermore, an Orewa homeowner responded to one of these print advertisements, engaging Mr Cole to replace a number of piles under the deck of her house. Mr Cole undertook this work, continuing the guise of a licensed builder. The homeowner paid Mr Cole for the job, which remains unfinished.“
Mr Thomas says the prosecution sends a clear message to the building industry that claiming to be a licensed building practitioner without actually holding such a license is illegal.
Where MBIE has evidence of this occurring, offenders can expect to be prosecuted accordingly,” he says.