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§ 517.9. Prohibited acts

Purdon's Pennsylvania Statutes and Consolidated StatutesTitle 73 P.S. Trade and CommerceEffective: July 7, 2011

Purdon's Pennsylvania Statutes and Consolidated Statutes
Title 73 P.S. Trade and Commerce (Refs & Annos)
Chapter 14B. Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act
Effective: July 7, 2011
73 P.S. § 517.9
§ 517.9. Prohibited acts
No person shall:
(1) Fail to register as required by this act.
(2) Fail to refund the amount paid for a home improvement within ten days of either the acceptance and execution of a return receipt for certified mail containing a written request for a refund or the refusal to accept the certified mail sent to the contractor's last known address if all of the following apply:
(i) No substantial portion of the contracted work has been performed at the time of the request.
(ii) More than 45 days have elapsed since the starting date specified in the written contract.
(3) Accept a municipal certificate of occupancy or other proof that performance of a home improvement contract is complete or satisfactorily concluded with knowledge that the document or proof is false and the performance is incomplete.
(4) Utter, offer or use a completion certificate or other proof that a home improvement contract is complete or satisfactorily concluded when the person knows or has reason to know that the document or proof is false and is made to accomplish any of the following:
(i) Make or accept an assignment or negotiation of the right to receive payment under a home improvement contract.
(ii) Get or grant credit or a loan on security of the right to receive payment under a home improvement contract.
(5) Abandon or fail to perform, without justification, any home improvement contract or project engaged in or undertaken by a contractor. For the purposes of this paragraph, the term “justification” shall include nonpayment by the owner as required under the contract or any other violation of the contract by the owner.
(6) Deviate from or disregard plans or specifications, in any material respect, without a written change order dated and signed by both the contractor and owner, which contains the accompanying price changes for each deviation.
(7) Prepare, arrange, accept or participate in the financing of a home improvement contract with knowledge that the home improvement contract states a greater monetary obligation than the actual price of the home improvement.
(8) Advertise or offer, by any means, to perform a home improvement if the person does not intend to do any of the following:
(i) Accept a home improvement contract.
(ii) Perform the home improvement.
(iii) Charge for the home improvement at the price advertised or offered.
(9) Demand or receive any payment for a home improvement before the home improvement contract is signed.
(10)(i) Except as provided under subparagraph (ii), for a home improvement contract in which the total price is more than $5,000, receive a deposit in excess of:
(A) one-third of the home improvement contract price; or
(B) one-third of the home improvement contract price plus the cost of special order materials that will be ordered, as designated in the written contract.
(ii) The provisions of subparagraph (i) shall not apply to a home improvement retailer, regardless of net worth, who does all of the following:
(A) Posts an irrevocable letter of credit payable to the bureau for the use and benefit of every person protected by the provisions of this subparagraph in a form approved by the bureau, in the amount of $100,000 per store location but not to exceed $2,000,000 for a home improvement retailer that has multiple stores.
(B) Ensures that its contractors are registered under this act and have proof of liability insurance as defined in section 4(a)(1)(ix).1
(iii) In the event of a dispute with a home improvement retailer or a contractor authorized to do work on behalf of the home improvement retailer, an owner may file with the bureau a complaint against the home improvement retailer and request a draw upon the home improvement retailer's letter of credit. The following shall apply:
(A) Upon receipt of a complaint, the bureau shall notify the home improvement retailer and investigate the complaint.
(B) Upon a determination by the bureau that the home improvement retailer is in default of the contract, the bureau may, after providing notice to the home improvement retailer, draw upon the irrevocable letter of credit to satisfy a consumer's complaint as part of its mediation process or a civil action brought under the act of December 17, 1968 (P.L.1224, No.387),2 known as the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law.
(C) A home improvement retailer with two draws on an irrevocable letter of credit within a two-year period issued for the purposes of this subparagraph shall be prohibited from posting an irrevocable letter of credit for purposes of this subparagraph for a period of five years beginning from the date of the second draw and shall be required to comply with subparagraph (i).
(11) While acting as a salesperson, fail to account for or remit to the contractor whom the salesperson represents a payment received in connection with a home improvement.
(12) Subsequent to entering into an agreement for home improvement services or materials, changes the name of the contractor's business, liability insurance information, the contractor's business address or any other identifying information in a fraudulent or deceptive manner likely to cause confusion or misunderstanding without advising the owner in writing within ten days following any such change.


2008, Oct. 17, P.L. 1645, No. 132, § 9, effective July 1, 2009. Amended 2011, July 7, P.L. 262, No. 52, § 2, imd. effective.


73 P.S. § 517.4.
73 P.S. § 201-1 et seq.
73 P.S. § 517.9, PA ST 73 P.S. § 517.9
Current through the end of the 2023 Regular Session. Some statute sections may be more current, see credits for details.
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