How can you avoid a mechanic’s lien?

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2020 | Construction Law |

Often times, you will have friends and family help you out in making modifications or repairs to your property. But there are certain situations where you need a contractor, a handyman or a subcontractor to help you build a fence, dig a pool, re-landscape the yard, paint the house, add the gutters, redo the roof, redo the driveway, redo the walk, remodel entire bathrooms, or remodel the kitchen. 

According to JDSUPRA, you should have an agreement with the party who is doing the work, a start and end time and a cost. You should also have written change orders if you have a written contract so that you can keep track and things do not get out of hand. If these people are not paid what they claim they are owed, they could file a lien against your property. It is called a mechanic’s lien. 

A mechanic lien is for anyone who does work to the property or who adds material to the property. Each state has different rules on this as far as who can file and how the procedure is for filing. There is typically a short period of time for them to file these leans, and it runs from the date that they last do work on your property or last added materials. 

Protect yourself from having this happen. You need to be clear about what you are paying. You need to get a receipt when you pay them in full. And the best thing would be to have your contractor mark paid or get what is called a lien release where they release all rights they have to the property. You want to have that to verify that you paid and you want to keep those records just in case somebody gets ambitious and files something against your property. 

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