2015 ORS 701.140¹
Types of allowable complaints
  • restriction on processing complaint for recoupment of lien

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This section is amended
Effective January 1, 2017
Relating to the Construction Contractors Board process for contested cases; amending ORS 701.005, 701.068, 701.088, 701.117, 701.133, 701.139, 701.140, 701.145, 701.146, 701.149, 701.150, 701.153, 701.180 and 701.235; and repealing ORS 87.059 and 701.144 and section 73, chapter 630, Oregon Laws 2011.

A complaint under ORS 701.139 (Board authority over disputes) must arise from the performance, or a contract for the performance, of work that requires a contractor license issued by the Construction Contractors Board. The complaint must be of one or more of the following types:

(1) A complaint against a contractor by the owner of a structure or other real property for the following:

(a) Negligent work.

(b) Improper work.

(c) Breach of contract.

(2) A complaint against a contractor by the owner of a structure or other real property to discharge, or to recoup funds expended in discharging, a lien established under ORS 87.010 (Construction liens) to 87.060 (Foreclosure) and 87.075 (Exemption of building materials from attachment by third persons) to 87.093 (Information Notice to Owner) under circumstances described under this subsection. The board shall process complaints described in this subsection under ORS 701.145 (Resolution of complaints involving work on residential structures or certain small commercial structures) only if:

(a) The owner paid the contractor for that contractor’s work subject to this chapter;

(b) A lien is filed against the property of the owner under ORS 87.010 (Construction liens) to 87.060 (Foreclosure) and 87.075 (Exemption of building materials from attachment by third persons) to 87.093 (Information Notice to Owner) because the contractor failed to pay the person claiming the lien for that person’s contribution toward completion of the improvement; and

(c) The complaint is described in ORS 701.139 (Board authority over disputes) (1) or (3)(a) or (b).

(3) A complaint against a licensed subcontractor by a licensed contractor for the following:

(a) Negligent work;

(b) Improper work; or

(c) Breach of contract.

(4) A complaint by a person furnishing labor to a contractor or owed employee benefits by a contractor.

(5) A complaint, as limited by rule of the board, by a person furnishing material or renting or supplying equipment to a contractor. The minimum limit set by the board may not exceed $150.

(6) A complaint by a subcontractor against a contractor for unpaid labor or materials arising out of a contract. [1981 c.618 §4; 1983 c.616 §13; 1989 c.167 §1; 1989 c.928 §16; 1991 c.181 §9; 1991 c.717 §1; 1997 c.301 §3; 1999 c.402 §30; 2001 c.197 §13; 2007 c.793 §12; 2007 c.836 §65; 2011 c.630 §45]

Note: The amendments to 701.140 (Types of allowable complaints) by section 65, chapter 630, Oregon Laws 2011, become operative July 1, 2017, and apply to complaints filed on or after July 1, 2017. See section 73, chapter 630, Oregon Laws 2011. The text that is operative on and after July 1, 2017, is set forth for the user’s convenience.

701.140 (Types of allowable complaints). A complaint under ORS 701.139 (Board authority over disputes) must arise from the performance, or a contract for the performance, of work that requires a contractor license issued by the Construction Contractors Board. The complaint must be of one or more of the following types:

(1) A complaint against a contractor by the owner of a structure or other real property for the following:

(a) Negligent work.

(b) Improper work.

(c) Breach of contract.

(2) A complaint against a contractor by the owner of a structure or other real property to discharge, or to recoup funds expended in discharging, a lien established under ORS 87.010 (Construction liens) to 87.060 (Foreclosure) and 87.075 (Exemption of building materials from attachment by third persons) to 87.093 (Information Notice to Owner) under circumstances described under this subsection. If the complaint is processed under ORS 701.145 (Resolution of complaints involving work on residential structures or certain small commercial structures), the Construction Contractors Board may reduce the amount of the complaint by any amount the complainant owes the contractor. The board shall process complaints described in this subsection under ORS 701.145 (Resolution of complaints involving work on residential structures or certain small commercial structures) only if:

(a) The owner paid the contractor for that contractor’s work subject to this chapter;

(b) A lien is filed against the property of the owner under ORS 87.010 (Construction liens) to 87.060 (Foreclosure) and 87.075 (Exemption of building materials from attachment by third persons) to 87.093 (Information Notice to Owner) because the contractor failed to pay the person claiming the lien for that person’s contribution toward completion of the improvement; and

(c) The complaint is described in ORS 701.139 (Board authority over disputes) (1) or (3)(a) or (b).

(3) A complaint against a licensed subcontractor by a licensed contractor for the following:

(a) Negligent work;

(b) Improper work; or

(c) Breach of contract.

(4) A complaint by a person furnishing labor to a contractor or owed employee benefits by a contractor.

(5) A complaint, as limited by rule of the board, by a person furnishing material or renting or supplying equipment to a contractor. The minimum limit set by the board may not exceed $150.

(6) A complaint by a subcontractor against a contractor for unpaid labor or materials arising out of a contract.

Notes of Decisions

Claim for improper work means claim that work was not suited to circumstances under which work was performed and where sufficient evidence exists that work was performed properly, claim cannot stand. Hettle v. Construc­tion Contractors Board, 260 Or App 135, 316 P3d 344 (2013), Sup Ct review denied

"Negligent work" refers to common-law negligence and when only economic losses are claimed, complainant must demonstrate that special rela­tionship creating heightened standard of care existed between complainant and respondent for claim to stand. Hettle v. Construc­tion Contractors Board, 260 Or App 135, 316 P3d 344 (2013), Sup Ct review denied

Chapter 701

Notes of Decisions

This is a remedial statute made for the protec­tion of the building business and of people dealing with builders who might be irresponsible; it should be read as a whole and liberally construed to accomplish its purpose. Robinson v. Builders Bd., 20 Or App 340, 531 P2d 752 (1975)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Lack of authority for director to appoint executive secretary for board, (1971) Vol 35, p 930; inap­pli­ca­bil­i­ty of this chapter to business of construc­tion or installa­tion of fences, sidewalks, septic tanks, wells and underground sprinkling systems, (1972) Vol 35, p 1278; mobile home as per­sonal or real prop­erty under this chapter, (1972) Vol 36, p 41; applica­tion of Homebuilders Law to mobile homes, (1978) Vol 38, p 693


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 701—Construction Contractors and Contracts, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors701.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 701, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano701.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.