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Comment on should you get permits / ISC Schedule / ISC schedule
June 7,  2021
Comment on should you get permits from article on May 24, 2021
          The subject of permits caught my eye.  There are two parts to the permit issue that always come up.  The first is who ultimately pays for the permit. Most alarm contracts require the subscriber to be responsible for the permit costs, which is correct.  But what rarely is addressed in contracts or in practice is who is responsible for obtaining the actual permit.
          As an example, in most jurisdictions the subscriber can get their own permits directly from the municipality that provides them.  However there are jurisdictions like, Denver Colorado, where the monitoring center has to get the permit for the subscriber. There are also others where the installer is required to get the permit and then, just to add some confusion, there are some that require the dealer to get the first one and then the subscriber is responsible to renew after the first term.
          It’s a very confusing and constantly changing landscape of permit requirements especially for the nationwide companies with approximately 73,000 different municipalities in North America to keep track of.  As a shameless plug, Rapid Response does have a permit database for all 73,000 municipalities along with API integration for those that need those kinds of services.
Morgan Hertel, VP of Technology and Innovation
Rapid Response Monitoring

Cell 909-915-8045
          Permits are addressed in the Standard Form Agreements.  Subscribers are always responsible for paying the permit fees if you use the Standard Form Agreements.  But who gets the permit is another issue, and an important one.
          Rapid Response is of course concerned with alarm permits required when alarm systems are professionally monitored.  A call into a police station will trigger an inquiry if the alarm is not permitted and one is required.  It’s the subscriber who will be fined, hopefully, since the monitoring center sure doesn’t want a fine.  Even if the monitoring center is fined it will look to the dealer who will in turn look to the subscriber.  Fines can be and are a sore spot for subscribers and strain the dealer – subscriber relationship, which sometimes ends up in the K&K Alarm Collection Department.
          Most alarm companies installing commercial fire in areas where permits are required [which is most areas] know they have to get permits, which can be costly.  Even when subscribers insist that permit fees be included in the installation price the alarm company is [or should be] smart enough to include that expense [which will include not only the actual fee but the professional services needed to prepare the plans and permit application].  The alarm company knows the fire alarm installation can’t start without the permit.  And, those who don’t know this find out painfully very soon after starting installation.
          Residential subscribers are a different category.  Those with professional monitoring often require a permit, but that permit is not required for installation, only once the system is on-line and ready to be monitored.  Consumer laws often require the “contractor” to obtain the permit.  Plenty of customers think that means the contractor should also pay for the permit; another sore spot.  The Standard Residential All in One deals with that clearly, so there should be no issue with it.  But even though the contract says it’s the subscriber’s obligation to obtain the permit the better practice, especially if the consumer law requires it, is for the alarm company to obtain the permit, at the subscriber’s expense.  If the local law requires the home owner to request the permit then the alarm company should let the subscriber know of the permit, in writing; include it in your contract Schedule of Equipment and Services [or your Proposal if that’s what you use for the Schedule of Equipment of Services].  Keep in mind that you are in a better position to know what permit requirements exist and how to get the applications then your customers.  Your customer gets one alarm system; you, hopefully, install many.
          And that’s not a shameless plug for Rapid Response; it’s well deserved.  Rapid Response runs a professional and knowledgeable operation and provides its dealers with the resources they need.  Frankly, if you’re not with a central station that offers this kind of resource you should call Morgan.  I included his cell phone; don’t say you got it from me.  Rapid Response is listed on The Alarm Exchange in the central station category.

ISC schedule
          I’ll be at ISC in July and we are now scheduling private meetings and participation in round table discussions, topics and guest speakers TBA.  Time for private meetings are limited so please reach out to Stacy Spector, Esq at 516 987 8428 or  Concierge Clients with appointments are all set. 

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301