RED BUD, Ill. – A roofing contractor in Red Bud, Illinois, is calling out a competitor, alleging they’re not properly licensed. Illinois law requires roofing contractors be licensed with the state.

“Make sure that you do your homework before you hire a contractor,” Ed Kupinski, owner of Five Star Roofing & Exteriors, said.

Kupinski says he was doing his own homework on a competitor when he noticed a problem.

“There’s no existing company under that name in the state, licensed. Being licensed is a huge thing,” he said.

Kupinski is referring to Hess Roofing. When the company’s signs began popping up around the area, Kupinski became suspicious.

“We know of a Roger Hess Construction. But we never knew there was a Hess Roofing. That’s what drew the red flag to us,” he said.

The Illinois Roofing Industry Licensing Act says you must be licensed with the state to be a roofing contractor. FOX 2 used the License Lookup Tool on the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation website, and there is no record of Hess Roofing having a state license.

“The licensing is very important. It’s not an easy thing to obtain. We’re proud of that, to have that license, and we can prove that we’re a legitimate company in the state of Illinois,” Kupinski said.

The law also states licensed roofing contractors shall affix the roofing contractor’s license number and the licensee’s name, as they appear on the license, to all contracts and bids. We did not see a license number posted on the Hess Roofing signs we photographed earlier this month. Kupinski says he filed a complaint against Hess Roofing to state officials.

“The only reason I come forward like this is that it may be a repercussion to me, being a roofing contractor. I’m not trying to take their work. Any of the local roofing contractors in our area, if their signs are sitting there, they legitimately sold that job,” he said. “They’re legitimately going to do that job, and they’re going to do a good job for them. I’m here to protect the homeowners. I’m here to protect people and to do things the right way as a contractor. That’s what we’re here for.”

Contact 2’s Mike Colombo spoke with Hess Roofing owner Roger Hess. Hess says he’s passed his state roofing test and sent this picture of the test results. He tells us he’s filed his license application with the state and hopes to have it in the next few weeks. While he waits for his license, Hess says he’s not breaking the law because he’s using a state licensed subcontractor to complete the roofing jobs he’s landed. According to the statute, “Sellers of roofing services may subcontract the provision of those roofing services only to roofing contractors licensed under this Act.”

Regarding his signs, he says a state investigator told him he could write his subcontractors name and license number on them to satisfy the law. Hess says he’s now doing that. We’ve contacted the state about this situation, and we’ll provide an update when we get one.