Could you be at risk for financial costs?
Back in January 2013 the government changed some legislation which requires Home Inspectors to be registered for Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB) and get clearance certificates for some home inspections.
If you hire a Home Inspector and the inspection falls under one of the categories that requires a clearance certificate you could be liable to fines and other penalties from the WSIB if your Home Inspector doesn’t get one prior to the inspection.
If you are a Realtor and choose to pay for the home inspection on behalf of your client, you too can be directly liable. If you are a Realtor and you recommend an inspector who is not registered, but should be for your client, you are again leaving yourself open to litigation.
The WSIB are responsible for administering the Workplace Safety Insurance Act, which is an act of provincial legislation covering workers compensation. The do this with the application of WSIB devised policies that say’s who should register, when and why.
The problem came about in January 2014 with the enforcement of the changes made the year before in Ontario Bill-119. This made it mandatory for all contractors to register for WSIB and get clearance certificates prior to commencing work on any property.
Unfortunately, the Home Inspection Profession, even though it is essentially a consultancy profession, was grouped in with Contractors and other construction trades.
The Bill has exemptions for registration and clearance, if the contractor is working on a home, owned by the client and being paid by the client. This unfortunately doesn’t translate to the Home Inspection Profession very well, and for the past 3 years the WSIB has been trying to patch up the inconsistencies with various statements to no avail. The inconsistencies still exist, and the risk to the consumers, Realtors and the Home Inspectors are real.
Before engaging any other Home Inspector, make sure your home inspection is exempt from WSIB, or your Home Inspector is registered.
WSIB fines can be up to $100,000 and you could also be liable for any premiums not paid by the Inspector. Realtors could be liable to the same fines or find themselves in court with a client who was incorrectly advised with respect to Home Inspector referrals.
In order to protect our clients, Realtors that refer us to them, and ourselves we had registered with the WSIB. This means that should we find that your home or property inspection falls under the category of one of those that requires a Clearance Certificate, we have you covered.
You can check on our current standing with the WSIB here.
You can find more about this issue at the WSIB links below and at the Ontario Association of Certified Home Inspectors here
‡ Important Notice
On the WSIB Penalties and Fines page you will see this table entry.
What this means is if your Home Inspector is not registered, and you don’t have a clearance certificate BEFORE a non-exempt home inspection BOTH you and the Home Inspector could be liable to fines of up to $100,000 from the WSIB. If you are a Realtor and you have referred a Home Inspector that gets the Client fined, you will likely find yourself in court as well.