What is a Mechanics Lien? A legal remedy for parties related to the construction industry that includes contractors, suppliers, subcontractors and other material men to resolve payment problems. Should anyone of them file a Mechanic’s Liens, also known as Material men’s Liens/Construction Liens, on the owner of the property they are working on, the court will put a hold on refinancing or selling the property until the owner pays off the unresolved debt.
Mechanic’s Lien Rationale
The basis for allowing Material men’s Liens, to start with, is that between the person whose property has been renovated (property owner) and the supplier of materials or services, the latter’s needs to receive payments is greater. The law presumes the property owner can, in turn, prosecute the general contractor and recover his money. However, such an eventuality of suing the general contractor takes time and may even eventually prove futile.
How to File For A Mechanics Lien
While the exact procedure varies (concerning when notices are required, the timelines and so forth) from one state to another, the following steps will ascertain if such an undertaking is worthwhile.
Establish if you (the supplier/subcontractor) are eligible to file a Lien. Find out if your state allows you to file one, if preliminary notice is necessary and whether you are within the timelines before proceeding to the next step
Draft the Lien, exercising extra caution. Make sure you include all the information the statute requires such as clearly identifying the property and formatting the document appropriately. So, consult the state’s recorder’s office in advance to acquaint yourself with any essential requirements.
File your Lien. Like in the previous step, consult the recording office before and while filing because each office has specific requirements and procedures. Also, proofread your document to eliminate minor typos.
Serve the parties. Since the specific approach to this step also varies from one state to another, consulting the relevant office will go a long way.
Enforce the Lien. Your Lien is enforceable only for a specified duration of time. Some states, however, allow you to extend the period with the permission from the property owner.
Mechanic’s Liens exist to protect all parties who take part in the construction of the property from non-payment. So, it is always advisable to always utilize the law to secure payments for supplies or services. Having answered the question, what is a mechanics lien, comprehensively and with the guideline on how to file for the same, above, every party involved in the construction project has the necessary information to successfully launch a Mechanics Lien.
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