Louisiana Revised Statutes Tit. 14, § 202.2. Solar electric and solar thermal system contractors;  solar tax credit fraud

A. (1) It shall be unlawful for any person who has received money from a contract for the sale, installation, maintenance, or repair of a solar electric system or solar thermal system, as defined in R.S. 47:6030(C) , to claim a tax credit provided by R.S. 47:6030 or other provision of law against taxes owed to the state of Louisiana if the person:

(a) Has failed to perform or complete the installation of the system or failed to maintain or repair the system under the terms of the contract.

(b) Fails to maintain or repair the system under the terms of the contract subsequent to claiming the tax credit.

(2)(a) The knowing material failure by a contractor to perform or complete the installation of a solar electric system or solar thermal system, as defined in R.S. 47:6030(C) , or maintain or repair the system under the terms of the contract shall constitute solar installation fraud.

(b) Whoever commits the crime of solar installation fraud shall be subject to the penalty provisions provided for in R.S. 14:202.1 .

B. (1) When the aggregate amount of the tax credit claimed is one thousand dollars or less, whoever violates the provisions of this Section upon conviction may be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned for not more than six months.

(2) When the aggregate amount of the tax credit claimed is greater than one thousand dollars, whoever violates the provisions of this Section upon conviction may be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars, or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not more than six months for each one thousand dollars of the tax credit claimed, provided that the aggregate imprisonment shall not exceed five years.

C. The district attorney shall notify the Department of Revenue in writing of any prosecution under this Section.

D. Nothing contained in this Section shall be construed to prevent the state, through the attorney general, from asserting a cause of action to recover damages or penalties, or assess or collect a penalty, resulting from a violation of this Section.

E. The remedies and rights provided under this Section are in addition to and do not preclude any remedy otherwise available under law, including but not limited to the provisions of R.S. 51:1401 et seq.

F. Any person who is found liable under a civil action brought by the attorney general resulting from a violation of this Section shall be liable to the attorney general for all costs, expenses and fees related to investigations and proceedings associated with the violation, including attorney fees.  An action to recover costs, expenses, fees, and attorney fees shall be ancillary to, and shall be brought and heard in the same court as, the civil action resulting from a violation of this Section.

G. (1) The attorney general may examine, or cause to be examined, by agents thereof, without notice, the conditions and affairs of any person who has received money from a contract for the sale, installation, maintenance, or repair of a solar electric system or solar thermal system, as defined in R.S. 47:6030(C) , and who has claimed a tax credit.

(2) In connection with an examination authorized by this Subsection, the attorney general, or his agents, may examine under oath any person concerning the affairs and business of the person who has received money from a contract for the sale, installation, maintenance, or repair of a solar electric system or solar thermal system, as defined in R.S. 47:6030(C) , and who has claimed a tax credit.

H. The provisions of this Section shall be applicable to entities engaging in the business of selling, leasing, installing, servicing, or monitoring solar energy equipment.  Nothing in this Section shall be construed to impose civil or criminal liability on homeowners or on any third party whose involvement is limited to providing financing to the homeowner or financing for installation.  Entities engaged in the business of arranging agreements for the lease or sale of solar energy systems or acquiring customers for financing entities shall not be exempt from the provisions of this Section.


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