New York Lien Waivers Guide and FAQs

Ready? Build Your Free New York
Lien Waivers Now

Get Your Lien Waiver Now
New York Lien Waiver FAQs

New York Lien Waiver Overview

New York Lien Waiver Rules


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

New York does not require any specific lien waiver form. Any form may be used.


lien waivers do not need to be notarized
Notarization Not Required

New York does not require lien waivers to be notarized.


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

New York does not allow lien waivers in the contract.


icon-can't waive lien rights
Cannot Waive Rights Before Payment

New York lien law specifically prohibits lien waivers prior to payment. Lien waivers are effective only if delivered simultaneously with, or after, payment is made.

Lien waivers are pretty complex documents. But they are also unassuming because of how frequently they get exchanged on construction jobs across the country, and in Illinois. A lien waiver is basically a receipt that payment has been made for work or materials on a job. These documents are exchanged at the time of payment, and commonly attached to subcontractor pay applications or vendor invoices.

There are different types of lien releases for different types of situations. And these documents have significant consequences for everyone on a job — as it connects directly to everyone’s right to cash! Also, one pesky aspect of lien waivers is that the process of sending, requesting, tracking, and collecting lien waivers is an administrative pain that slows down the payment on a project.

Knowing everything you can about lien waivers will allow you to make your process faster. And if your process is faster, your cash will move faster; and that’s good news for everyone on the project!

New York lien waiver laws

New York lien waivers don’t have specific requirement with respect to form or language, but they do have specific requirements with respect to when they can be effective.

In New York, there aren’t specific laws that detail what a lien waiver should say, or how exactly a lien waiver should look. This means that parties on a New York job have a lot of leeway in determining the contents of the lien waivers that they request or provide. This, in turn, means that unscrupulous parties can take advantage of the lax rules regarding the lien waiver form to include overreaching clauses.

There are some significant limitations on how and when contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers can waive their lien rights in New York, though. Since protecting lien rights is public policy in many states, there are often protections in place to make sure those rights aren’t unfairly side-stepped. New York, in particular, specifically prohibits lien waivers prior to payment. Lien waivers are effective only if delivered simultaneously with, or after, payment is made.

It’s important to make sure that lien waivers aren’t accidentally or purposefully overreaching), and that they are given at the right time and in exchange for payment. The resources, forms, guides, and frequently asked questions about New York Lien Waivers on this page will help you get it right.

New York Lien Waivers FAQs

It's common for lien waivers (also called lien releases) to be exchanged between parties along with pay applications and construction invoices in New York. While there are some protections in place in New York to regulate when lien waivers may be effectively provided, the language and form of lien waivers are not regulated in New York. This means it's important to understand the ins-and-outs of lien waivers when exchanging them in New York. In New York, unlike some other states, there are no specific set of laws regulating the lien waiver forms and language. The below frequently asked questions will help with some common issues encountered in New York.

New York Lien Waiver FAQs

Does New York require a specific statutory lien waiver form?

No, New York does not require or provide statutory forms for lien waivers. Because the form and content of lien waivers aren’t regulated under New York’s Lien Laws, careful attention should be given to the actual terms of the waiver to ensure you’re not waiving more than intended.

• See: Should You Sign That Lien Waiver?

What are the requirements for an New York lien waiver? What makes a lien waiver binding?

In order for a NY lien waiver to be enforceable, the waiver must clear and unambiguous, and the intent to waive lien rights must be “unmistakably manifested, and is not to be inferred from a doubtful or equivocal act.”

Are unconditional lien waivers prohibited in New York?

No, unconditional lien waivers are valid and enforceable as long as they are after payment has been received. However, if you are unsure if payment will clear, then a conditional waiver is the safer option.

• See: Conditional v. Unconditional Lien Waivers, What’s the Difference?

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

Yes, under NY Lien Law §34, any contract or agreement to waive the right to file or enforce a lien is against public policy. This is a clear prohibition against “no-lien” clauses in New York that waive lien rights before performance. Furthermore, waivers cannot be made in advance of payment, only delivered simultaneously with, or after payment is made.

Lastly, New York specifically allows mechanics liens to be subordinated after filing, but it is unclear if an advance subordination agreement is allowed.

Must a New York lien waiver be notarized?

Need More Help With New York Lien Waivers? We're Here.

Ask an expert for free

Check out our payment experts
Construction attorneys: Courtney Stricklen, Christopher Ng, Andrea Goldman, and Peter Ryan

Recent Questions & Answers
About New York Lien Waivers

what is the difference, if any, between waiver of mechanic liens in commercial and residential property? For NY

what is the difference, if any, between waiver of mechanic liens in commercial and residential property? For NY

Lien recording docs mailed day before payment received

My documents are being mailed today/tomorrow to all parties. The customers lawyer reached out today and sent a copy of our check and is requesring...


What can I do if the contractor fraudulently filled out lien waivers?


What can I do if the contractor fraudulently filled out lien waivers for subcontractor stating thatthey were paid, when in fact subcontractor was not paid....

How to file a lien in New York

Need to file a New York mechanics lien? File your mechanics lien with Levelset, the lien experts quickly and easily. Or you can follow the 3 steps below to file a lien yourself with Levelset's free information.
File with the Mechanics Lien Experts
We’re the Mechanics Lien experts. With us it’s fast, easy, affordable, and done right!
File Now

Want to Learn More about How New York Contractors Pay?
Greenr World
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
75 / 100
View
Ritz Carlton
Rating 5.0
D
Payment Score
46 / 100
View
United States Department of Veterans Affairs
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
65 / 100
View
Stevens Construction Corp.
Rating 4.8
B
Payment Score
82 / 100
View
See other Lists of Contractors and How to Best Work With Them

Free New York Lien Waivers Forms & Templates

New York 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, these forms don’t waive more than intended, are fair, and can’t be used against the singing party.

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 New York lien waiver form.

Free New York Lien Waiver Forms

These New York lien waiver forms are clear and fair. Make it easy, and use forms from the source you can trust.

New York Partial Conditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

New York Partial Conditional Lien Waiver Form

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

Get Form Now

New York Partial Unconditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

New York Partial Unconditional Lien Waiver Form

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

Get Form Now

New York Final Conditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

New York Final Conditional Lien Waiver Form

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

Get Form Now

New York Final Unconditional Lien Waiver Form - free from

New York Final Unconditional Lien Waiver Form

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

Get Form Now

Helping Thousands Of Contractors
Like You With New York Lien Waivers