2010 Hawaii Code
DIVISION 2. BUSINESS
TITLE25. PROFESSIONS AND OCCUPATIONS
§444-28 Statute of limitations; recovery from fund.
§444-28 Statute of limitations; recovery from fund. (a) No action for an arbitration award or for a judgment which may subsequently result in an order for collection from the contractors recovery fund shall be commenced later than six years from the accrual of the cause of action thereon. When any injured person commences action for an arbitration award or for a judgment which may result in collection from the contractors recovery fund, the injured person shall notify the board in writing to this effect at the time of the commencement of such action. The board shall have the right to intervene in and defend any such action. Nothing in this section shall supersede the statute of limitations as contained in section 657-8.
(b) When any injured person recovers a valid judgment in any circuit court or district court of the county where the violation occurred against any licensed contractor for such act, representation, transaction, or conduct which is in violation of the provisions of this chapter or the regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, which occurred on or after June 1, 1974, the injured person may, upon the termination of all proceedings, including reviews and appeals in connection with the judgment, file a verified claim in the court in which the judgment was entered and, upon ten days' written notice to the contractors license board, may apply to the court for an order directing payment out of the contractors recovery fund, of the amount unpaid upon the judgment, subject to the limitations stated in this section. Before proceeding against the contractors recovery fund, the injured person must first proceed against any existing bond covering the licensed contractor.
(c) The court shall proceed upon such application in a summary manner, and, upon the hearing thereof, the injured person shall be required to show:
(1) The injured person is not a spouse of debtor, or the personal representative of such spouse.
(2) The injured person has complied with all the requirements of this section.
(3) The injured person has obtained a judgment as set out in subsection (b) of this section, stating the amount thereof and the amount owing thereon at the date of the application.
(4) The injured person has made all reasonable searches and inquiries to ascertain whether the judgment debtor is possessed of real or personal property or other assets, liable to be sold or applied in satisfaction of the judgment.
(5) That by such search the injured person has discovered no personal or real property or other assets liable to be sold or applied, or that the injured person has discovered certain of them, describing them, owned by the judgment debtor and liable to be so applied, and that the injured person has taken all necessary action and proceedings for the realization thereof, and that the amount thereby realized was insufficient to satisfy the judgment, stating the amount so realized and the balance remaining due on the judgment after application of the amount realized.
(d) The court shall make an order directed to the contractors license board requiring payment from the contractors recovery fund of whatever sum it shall find to be payable upon the claim, pursuant to the provisions of and in accordance with the limitations contained in this section, if the court is satisfied, upon the hearing of the truth of all matters required to be shown by the injured person by subsection (c) of this section and that the injured person has fully pursued and exhausted all remedies available to the injured person for recovering the amount awarded by the judgment of the court.
(e) The license of the contractor shall be automatically terminated upon execution of a settlement agreement requiring payment from the contractors recovery fund or the issuance of a court order authorizing payment from the contractors recovery fund. No contractor shall be eligible to receive a new license until the contractor has repaid in full, plus interest at the rate of ten per cent a year, the amount paid from the contractors recovery fund on the contractor's account. A discharge in bankruptcy shall not relieve a person from the penalties and disabilities provided in this subsection.
(f) If, at any time, the money deposited in the contractors recovery fund is insufficient to satisfy any duly authorized claim or portion thereof, the contractors license board shall, when sufficient money has been deposited in the contractors recovery fund, satisfy such unpaid claims or portions thereof, in the order that such claims or portions thereof were originally filed.
(g) With respect to the repair or alteration of an existing residential building or structure or any appurtenance thereto, including but not limited to swimming pools, retaining walls, garages or sprinkling systems, initial construction of such appurtenances, and landscaping of private residences, including condominium or cooperative units, pursuant to a contract between the owner and a licensed contractor for which the owner has paid the contractor in full, should, because of the contractor's default, a mechanic's or materialman's lien be enforced against the property pursuant to section 507-47, the court hearing the action shall award such an owner or the owner's assigns a valid judgment against the contractor in an amount equal to the amount of the lien together with reasonable attorney's fees as determined by the court. The judgment shall include an order directing payment out of the contractors recovery fund. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section to the contrary, the owner or the owner's assigns need not meet any other requirement to secure payment from the contractors recovery fund, except that notice of the lien enforcement hearing shall be given to the contractors license board so it may appear pursuant to section 444-31. [L 1973, c 170, pt of §1; am L 1975, c 183, §1; am L 1977, c 127, §3; gen ch 1985; am L 1992, c 258, §§5, 6]
Building material supplier could recover from fund where action against contractor began prior to 1977 amendments. 63 H. 540, 632 P.2d 649.
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