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Everyone knows about Hurricane Sandy, which is all over the news and a somewhat shocking reminder that the Hurricane Season ends in November (not September). Nevertheless, in the wake of this hurricane, there will certainly be some destruction and inconveniences in the Northeast. If there are any positives resulting from this, it is the uptick in business created for the construction industry. It could be a particularly bright spot for the industry in the Northeast region, which typically experiences a busienss hibernation as the winter months roll in.
If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times: Hurricanes and national disasters like this create a increase in work, but that translates into more mechanics lien filings, more lien protection needed and many construction businesses crossing over state lines and entering areas where they are unfamiliar with the lien laws. For a very in-depth discussion of all these issues, check out our “Storms” tag.
Here is a summary of what you need to know.
#1) If You’re Crossing State Lines Beware Of Substantial Legal Differences
Generally speaking, laws are quite different state to state. In the mechanics lien world, however, the laws are radically different. Not only that, but compliance with the mechanics lien laws start when you first start furnishing to a construction project, making your window of time to learn and comply with these laws very, very short.
When a national disaster like Hurricane Sandy blows through a region, contractors and material suppliers start planning on how to capitalize on the business opportunity. Frequently, they will start going into neighboring states to do business. Maybe they explore these other states for the first time, or maybe they are just increasing their volume in the neighboring state. In any event, getting a firm handle on what the lien and notice requirements are will be important.
#2) Be Prepared For Money To Come Slowly (So Protect Your Lien Rights)
National disasters like Hurricane Sandy bring a lot of money into a region to rebuild and repair. This money typically comes from the government and insurance companies. If you know anything about the government or the insurance industry, you know that these entities can move very slowly. This means that the money can flow down very slowly.
If you’re furnishing labor or materials to projects expecting payment funded by these sources, you would do best to prepare for delays. You should also prepare for the unfortunate misappropriation of these government or insurance funds by recipients.
Resource Center for Damage Restoration Companies on Levelset .com
As briefly discussed in this post, the damage restoration and repair industry has unique mechanics lien challenges. They are frequently thrust into a new territory without much knowledge about the lien laws in that state, and they are frequently waiting on government or insurance proceeds to get paid. As such, we’ve created a resource center for these types of companies.
You can view that center here: Mechanics Liens for Damage Restoration Companies Resource Center.