Photos of construction jobs found on his FB page. No permission from customers to take or use photos.
Assuming there's no contract restriction between homeowner and contractor, no one owns the right to take photos of publicly viewable buildings, and contractors don't need the consent of homeowners to show proof of their work. Whoever takes the photos owns them and the copyrights in them, so there's no copyright issue.
There could a privacy issue if the identity of the homeowners is revealed by the photos, but otherwise, anyone can personally see and/or take photos of a home. The subcontractors were obviously authorized to be inside the home, so again, except for privacy concerns, a contractor or subcontractor can take photos of their work.
As between you, the general contractor, and your subs, the first thing to review is your contract with them, to see if this issue is addressed, because there could be a breach of contract. There is no claim for failure to accord correct credit due to a Supreme Court case called Dastar, but I think you could assert a defamatory provably false fact expressed or implied in any statement or implication on their Facebook page that they, not you, performed work that you did.
Of course you can also post your own photos of your work that truthfully represents that the work done was yours.
See your own business litigator to discuss all the details of your situation.
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You may be able to file a complaint with the Office of the Attorney General of the state of New York
In addition, you may be able to sue for at least false advertising.
You should discuss with an intellectual property attorney in a private consultation.
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I'm not so sure you have any complaint here. If the sub did the work that they are depicting on their social media accounts then they are really just stating a fact right? If however they are doing something that is very misleading and injurious to your business perhaps it become unfair business competition.
Regards to the photos themselves, I'm also not so sure any permission would be required. It might get more sticky if for example the photos showed conspicuous images of identifiable persons within them.
If this is a serious concern for you, I suggest that you consult with a lawyer in private and discuss your best course of action in more detail. You can start by calling around to several for a free phone consultation, get some insights then pick the best fit to work with.
DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed with the law firm of Natoli-Legal, LLC on the basis of this posting.
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