Contractors & suppliers have strong lien rights in Nebraska. If a contractor or supplier isn’t paid on an Nebraska job, they can turn to filing a lien to speed up payment and protect themselves. However, there are specific requirements and rules that must be followed. Here are 5 essential things you need to know about Nebraska’s mechanics lien law.
1) All Participants are Eligible Except Suppliers to Suppliers or Suppliers to Parties Lower than 1st-Tier Subcontractors.
In Nebraska, the only project participants who do not have mechanics lien rights are suppliers to suppliers or suppliers to parties lower than 1st-tier subcontractors. This means that prime contractors, subcontractors, laborers, suppliers, landscapers, architects, surveyors, and designers generally have lien rights. In some cases, even if a project hasn’t been started yet, architects and design professionals can still claim lien rights.
2) There Is a Firm Deadline to File a Nebraska Mechanics Lien for All Project Participants
The deadline to file a mechanics lien in Nebraska is 120 days from the last day that a project participant provided services or materials on a project.
3) Preliminary Notice Not Usually Required, But Notice of Recording Is Mandatory
Generally, preliminary notice is not required in the state of Nebraska. It may be required if the property owner is considered a “protected party.” An owner is considered protected if they own:
– a residential owner-occupied single-family property (1-4 units)
– vacant land intended to be improved and used as a residence
– an owner of a condominium unit
In order to attain payment in these circumstances, a project participant may send a Notice of Intent to Lien.
While preliminary notice is generally not required, once a participant files a mechanics lien in Nebraska a stamped copy, filed and recorded at the register’s office of deeds, must be sent to the property owner within 10 days of recording the lien. It’s preferable to do so by priority mail for proof of completion.
4) Fees Are Not Usually Included in Nebraska Mechanics Liens
In Nebraska, attorney’s fees, collection costs, and other amounts are not usually included in a mechanics lien. However, indirect or consequential damages (overhead, delay damages, lost profit, etc.) may be allowed to a general contractor in Nebraska if the lien claimant suffering the damages substantially completed the contract. This means that no consequential or indirect damages are allowed in the event that the lien claimant is terminated prior to completion of the contract.
5) Typically a Nebraska Mechanics Lien Is Effective for 2 Years
An action to enforce a Nebraska mechanics lien must be initiated by the project participant within 2 years after filing the lien. If the property owner or other interested party demands initiation, the deadline will be changed to 30 days from receipt of a written request for action.
A Notice of Intent to Lien can be enough to push for Payment in Nebraska