Guide to filing a mechanics lien in El Paso County

Unfortunately, slow payment times are an all-too-common feature of the construction industry. At some point or another, contractors all over the country will file a mechanics lien to help speed the process up. However that’s easier said than done in some states. Although Texas grants strong and comprehensive lien rights to contractors, the lien laws in the Lone Star State can get tricky. If you’re gearing up to file a mechanics lien with the El Paso County Clerk, here are a few of the most common sources of confusion:

  1. Contractors who aren’t contracted with the owner must send recurring, monthly notices to protect their lien rights. More specifically, they have to send multiple different types of notices, and each one must be sent at the right time.
  2. In Texas, homesteads are treated differently from ordinary residences. If you’re not directly contracted with the homestead owner, you rely on the general contractor to maintain their lien prerequisites. If they can’t do that, then you could lost your lien rights.
  3. Determining mechanics lien deadlines can be tricky. The standard timeframe of the 15th day of the fourth month after the last month that work or services were furnished doesn’t always apply.

Learn more about these confusing notice laws here.

The good news is that filing your lien in El Paso County isn’t as complicated as the lien laws themselves. This page helps you get to know your El Paso County Clerk. Here, you’ll find helpful information regarding recording requirements, recording fees, formatting requirements, and more.

If you’re looking for a complete breakdown of the filing process, check out our step-by-step guide to Filing A Texas Mechanics Lien.

Where is the El Paso County Clerk's Office that files mechanic liens?

The El Paso County Clerk that records mechanics liens is located at the following address:

500 E. San Antonio
Suite 105
El Paso, Texas 79901
Phone: (915) 546-2071

Hours: Mon-Fri, 8:00am-5:00pm

What is El Paso County's Recording Backlog?

Hard to say, but probably long. County backlogs can be long, and El Paso mail-filing backlog is notoriously long.

The El Paso County Clerk does not publish how long their mail backlog is…but you can get a small hint by looking at how long it takes to get something recorded even in person! Here is how they describe this period:

All courier services, third-party representatives, attorney services and messengers must drop off Deeds, Deed of Trust, Leases, and Notice of Default submitted for recording. Documents will be ready for pick-up within 3 business days.

An examiner will review submitted document for proper completion, collect the appropriate fees and taxes, and record your document. The original document will be mailed to you within 4 to 6 weeks (after we complete the process of adding your document to our database for archival retention).

Yikes!

Make sure you send your mechanics lien by in-person delivery or courier. Mailed liens are not immediately recorded and can face waits of more than 8 weeks before they are processed or returned in El Paso.

Should my mechanics lien be filed in El Paso County, or some other county?

If the project is located in El Paso county, then yes, you will want to record your lien with the El Paso County Clerk’s office.

What are El Paso County's requirements for recording a mechanics lien?

El Paso County publishes a long list of requirements for document recording, but only a few of the items apply to mechanic’s lien claims. Here are those items.

1. The property must be located in El Paso County. (C.C. § 1169)

2. The document must be authorized or required by law to be recorded. (G.C. § 27201)

3. Signatures must be original unless the document is a certified copy issued by the appropriate custodian of the public record. (G.C. § 27201b, G.C. § 27279, Evidence Code § 1530)

4. Include the name of the party requesting the recording and a name and address where the document can be returned. (G.C. § 27361.6)

5. The document must be properly acknowledged, unless exempt. Texas requires an (all-purpose acknowledgement). (G.C. §27201, 27289, 27285, 27287, 27288; C.C. § 1189)

6. Documents must be clearly legible in order to produce a readable photographic record. This pertains to the document text, notary seals, certificates and other attachments, such as legal descriptions. (Gov. 27361.7)

7. Include the recording fees.

What are the margin & page size requirements to file a lien in El Paso County?

Paper Size: All documents must be on regular letter-sized paper: 8.5 by 11 inches. Other page sizes incur additional recording fees.

Margin: Except for the first page (see below), a minimum of 0.5 inches must be left blank on all sides of the document.

First Page:: 2.5 inches of margin must be left at the top of the first page.

On the left 3.5 inches across, put the name and address of the party requesting the recording, and the address where the document is to be returned following recording.

The remainder of this space (the right 5 inches) is reserved for use by the Registrar-Clerk to enter the official recording information.

Use A Cover Sheet If First Page Does Not Comply: If the first page of a document does not comply with these legal requirements, attach a separate page to the front of the document that meets these spacing criteria and which includes the title or titles of the document. Download the El Paso County Clerk’s Cover Sheet here, if needed.

How can I make payment to the El Paso County Clerk?

El Paso county has many payment options, including payment by cash, credit, and check. However, this depends on whether you’re recording something by mail or in person.

Payment Options for In-Person Recording

• Cash

• Debit/Credit Cards: American Express®, Discover®, MasterCard® or Visa®. Note that an additional $1.75 service fee will be added to your purchase when paying with a debit/credit card.

• Check or Cashier’s Check. Note that valid identification (i.e., driver’s license) of the signer is required and must be presented at time of recording. Out-of-state checks are accepted, but temporary and foreign checks are not accepted. Checks should be made payable to the _Registrar-Clerk/County Clerk._

Payment Options for Recording by Mail

Check, Cashier’s Check or Money Order: Make payable to the _Registrar-Clerk/County Clerk._ Out-of-state checks are accepted, but not temporary or foreign checks.

If you are unsure of the fees, submit a blank check indicating on the Memo field “NOT TO EXCEED $[fill in amount].”

Send documents and payment to:
El Paso County Clerk
500 E. San Antonio
Suite 105
El Paso, Texas 79901

What are the filing fees to record a mechanics lien in El Paso County?

The El Paso County Clerk’s “base fee” to file a mechanics lien is $26, and includes 1 page. Each additional page costs $3.00.

If your document does comply with margin and print requirements, you may also be charged one of the following penalties:

Nonconforming Fee: $3 per page that is not 8.5 by 11 inches in size (not to exceed 8.5 by 14 inches).

Penalty Print: $1 for each page where penalty print appears, which is defined as “wording added to the printed form that is spaced either more than nine lines per vertical inch, has more than 22 characters and spaces per inch measured horizontally, for not less than three inches in one sentence.”

Indexing Fee: If your lien mentions more than 10 names that must be indexed, you will be charged $4 for each additional group of 10 names.

Fees to obtain a copy
There are also fees charged to get a copy back from the Clerk.

Conformed Copy: Free
Certified Copy: $6 first page, $3 additional
Plain Copy: $5 first page, $3 each additional.

How do I get a recorded copy of my lien from El Paso County's Clerks Office?

At the time of recording you can purchase a certified copy from the county (fees above). In this case the county will make a copy for you, and certify it.

You can also bring your own copy of the original document to the county when you record it, and they will stamp it to look just like the original. This is called a “conformed” copy and is not certified. It is free to get 1 conformed copy. Each additional is $5.00 for the first page and $3.00 for each additional page.

Other than at the time of recording, requesting a Certified Copy of your recording in-person can only be done at the following office:

El Paso County Clerk
500 E. San Antonio, Suite 105
El Paso, TX 79901
(915) 546-2071

To do this online:
https://www.epcounty.com/records.htm

Which courier(s) can help me file a mechanics lien in El Paso County?

There are many courier services in El Paso. We recommend DDS Legal Services for courier services to the El Paso county Clerk’s office.

Do I have the right to file a mechanics lien in El Paso, Texas?

Determining whether you do or do not have a mechanics lien right can be tricky. Generally speaking, every state gives those who have furnished labor and/or materials to a construction project the right to file a mechanics lien if unpaid for the furnishing. The same is true in Texas. However, there are some state-specific limitations as to who is qualified to file a mechanics lien that is important when considering whether you have the right to file a mechanics lien in El Paso County, Texas.

Great and detailed information about this is available on our Texas Mechanics Lien Resources Page.

When is the deadline to file a lien in El Paso?

In El Paso County, Texas, your deadline to file a mechanics lien is dependent upon your role in the project. A direct contractor must record his claim of lien after completion of the direct contract, and either ninety (90) days after completion of the work of improvement, or sixty (60) days after the owner records a Notice of Completion or Cessation; whichever is sooner.

A claimant other than a direct contractor must record his mechanics’ lien after the claimant ceases to provide work, and either: ninety (90) days after completion of the work of improvement,or, thirty (30) days after the owner records a Notice of Completion or Cessation; whichever is earlier.

What is the fee to file a Texas Preliminary Notice in El Paso County?

The filing fee to record and file a Texas preliminary notice in El Paso is $64. While you can file a Texas preliminary notice in El Paso, there is a question of whether you should.

We explored this in the Ultimate Guide to Texas’s Preliminary Notice, as well as in response to this question in our Expert Center: Am I required to record – or should I record – a Texas preliminary notice?.

Since filing a Texas prelim offers very little benefits, but is quite costly, it’s probably a good idea to NOT file it. And you don’t need to. You only need to send it. More about that on our guide and FAQs area, all linked to above.

Top Payment Experts & Services in El Paso to help you File Your Texas Mechanics Lien.

Featured Lien Filing Service
Lien Filing Service
Learn Who are the Fast Paying and Slow Paying Contractors in Texas
MHT Constructors
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
56 / 100
View
Crescent Communities
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
60 / 100
View
CoDel Inc
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
75 / 100
View
Foundation Building Materials (FBM)
Rating 5.0
C
Payment Score
65 / 100
View
See other Lists of Contractors and How to Best Work With Them