Louisiana Lien Waivers Guide and FAQs

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Louisiana Waiver FAQs

Louisiana Lien Waivers Overview

Louisiana Lien Waiver Rules


  • Rules At A Glance
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lien waivers not regulated
No Specific Form

Louisiana does not provide or require statutory forms for lien waivers to be effective. Any form may be used.


lien waivers do not need to be notarized
Notarization Not Required

Louisiana lien waivers do not require notarization to be effective.


icon-can't waive lien rights
Cannot Waive Rights in Contract

Louisiana has no specific statutory provision that disallows a lien waiver in a contract, or otherwise prior to work. However, court decisions have required an “existing right, a knowledge of its existence and an actual intention to relinquish it.” Since there is no actual right to file a lien until work is performed, no waiver is acceptable until that time.


icon-can
Can Waive Rights Before Payment

In Louisiana, once a claimant has the right to file a lien, the claimant is able to waive that right. This means that waivers post-work, but pre-payment are acceptable.

Lien waivers act as a receipt for payment. They are exchanged by parties at the time of payment on a construction project. It’s common for subs and suppliers to include a lien waiver with their pay applications or invoices to streamline the process. When a lien waiver is executed, the party is giving up (i.e. waiving) their lien rights in the amount listed on the waiver.

Louisiana lien waivers are mostly unregulated under the Louisiana mechanics lien laws, at least in terms of the form or specific language necessary to make the waiver effective. Louisiana does not provide lien waiver form templates in its statutes, and doesn’t really provide much guidance on how a lien waiver should be drafted. Participants on Louisiana construction projects, therefore, have the freedom to choose the exact format and language of lien waivers. Given this amount of freedom allowed, contractors should read the language carefully to ensure they aren’t waiving more than just lien rights. However, there are rules related to when a lien waiver can be given and be effective.

There are limitations related to when lien waivers can be requested and provided, however. No specific statutory provision disallows advance lien waivers in Louisiana, but a 5th Circuit Court of Appeals case, applying Louisiana law, restricted such waivers. By requiring an “existing right, a knowledge of its existence and an actual intention to relinquish it,” the court determined that there is no actual right to file a lien at the time a construction contract is signed and that there could be no waiver until the actual right exists. The court also determined that the failure to pay is a breach of contract, and, since the breach allowed the dissolution of the contract, it would have negated the lien waiver contained within.

Unfortunately, this is not the end of the discussion:  Since this was not a Louisiana state court making the determination there is the possibility that a state court could go in another direction; and, the language of the court left open the possibility of cases in which an advance lien waiver may be enforceable.

The information on this page provides resources, forms, and frequently asked questions about Louisiana Lien Waivers to help your construction company get it done correctly.

Louisiana Lien Waivers FAQs

Louisiana's lien waiver rules and requirements aren't established by statute. This can create some difficult situations for construction participants in Louisiana, who have to navigate providing waivers in order to get paid as quickly as possible, but without giving up more than they bargained for. We have answers to some of the most common questions about Louisiana's lien waiver rules below.

Louisiana Lien Waiver FAQs

Does Louisiana require a specific statutory lien waiver forms?

No, Louisiana does not provide or require statutory forms for lien waivers.

Since the language on Louisiana lien waivers isn’t governed, be sure to read the terms carefully to ensure you aren’t waiving more than just lien rights.

• See: Should I sign that lien waiver?

What are the requirements for a Louisiana lien waiver? What makes a lien waiver binding?

A 5th Circuit Court of Appeals case has required an “existing right, a knowledge of its existence and an actual intention to relinquish it.” In other words, all that is required is the existence of lien rights, knowledge that the waiving party has lien rights, and a purposeful intention to waive said rights.

Unconditional lien waivers become binding as soon as the form is signed. As far as conditional lien waivers are concerned, they are just as valid as unconditional waivers, except they don’t become binding unless payment has been made. Conditional waivers are always the safer option for contractors.

Are unconditional lien waivers prohibited in Louisiana?

No, unconditional lien waivers are not prohibited by statutory provision or case law. But project participants should be cautious when dealing with unconditional waivers. For more on this, see the answer to this LA contractor’s question: How will signing an unconditional progress payment waiver affect a lien we filed?

Is there a specific statutory prohibition on lien waivers in advance of payments, furnishing of work, or furnishing of materials in Louisiana?

No specific statutory provision disallows an advance lien waiver.  However, case law has severely restricted enforceability of such waivers.

By requiring an “existing right, a knowledge of its existence and an actual intention to relinquish it,” the court has determined that there is no actual right to file a lien at the time the contract was signed and that there could be no waiver.  The court also determined that the failure to pay is a breach of contract, and, since the breach allowed the dissolution of the contract, it would have negated the lien waiver contained within.  However, this is not the end of the discussion:  This was not a Louisiana state court making the determination; and the language of the court left open the possibility of cases in which an advance lien waiver may be enforceable.

• See: “No-Lien Clauses” A 50 State Overview

Do Louisiana lien waivers be notarized?

No. Lien waivers in Louisiana do not need to be notarized in order to be effective, provided they are otherwise valid waivers.

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How to file a lien in Louisiana

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Free Louisiana Lien Waivers Forms & Templates

Louisiana doesn’t really regulate the language on lien waivers. This means that you need to be sure about what your lien waiver says before providing it to another party since it’s easy to end up waiving more than you bargained for. Using these forms provided by Levelset is safe, easy, stress-free, and fair for everyone involved.

When used correctly, the forms provided here for free by Levelset are clear and fair to all parties. You can download them free, or use our free system to send or request your Louisiana lien waiver form.

Free Louisiana Lien Waiver Forms

These Louisiana lien waiver forms are compliant with the state's requirements. Make it easy, and use forms from the source you can trust.

Louisiana Final Conditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

Louisiana Final Conditional Lien Waiver Form

This la final conditional waiver (also called a final conditional lien release) should be used when the final payment for a project is expected but...

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Louisiana Final Unconditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

Louisiana Final Unconditional Lien Waiver Form

This la final unconditional waiver (also called a final unconditional lien release) should be used when the final payment for a project has been made...

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Louisiana Partial Conditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

Louisiana Partial Conditional Lien Waiver Form

This la partial conditional waiver (also called a partial conditional lien release) should be used when a progress payment on the project is expected. There...

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Louisiana Partial Unconditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

Louisiana Partial Unconditional Lien Waiver Form

This la partial unconditional waiver (also called a partial unconditional lien release) should be used when a progress payment on the project has been received....

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