(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, every person furnishing professional services, materials, or equipment for the improvement of real property shall give the owner or reputed owner notice in writing of the right to claim a lien. If the prime contractor is in compliance with the requirements of RCW 19.27.095, 60.04.230, and 60.04.261, this notice shall also be given to the prime contractor as described in this subsection unless the potential lien claimant has contracted directly with the prime contractor. The notice may be given at any time but only protects the right to claim a lien for professional services, materials, or equipment supplied after the date which is sixty days before:
(a) Mailing the notice by certified or registered mail to the owner or reputed owner; or
(b) Delivering or serving the notice personally upon the owner or reputed owner and obtaining evidence of delivery in the form of a receipt or other acknowledgement signed by the owner or reputed owner or an affidavit of service.
In the case of new construction of a single-family residence, the notice of a right to claim a lien may be given at any time but only protects the right to claim a lien for professional services, materials, or equipment supplied after a date which is ten days before the notice is given as described in this subsection.
(2) Notices of a right to claim a lien shall not be required of:
(a) Persons who contract directly with the owner or the owner’s common law agent;
(b) Laborers whose claim of lien is based solely on performing labor; or
(c) Subcontractors who contract for the improvement of real property directly with the prime contractor, except as provided in subsection (3)(b) of this section.
(3) Persons who furnish professional services, materials, or equipment in connection with the repair, alteration, or remodel of an existing owner-occupied single-family residence or appurtenant garage:
(a) Who contract directly with the owner-occupier or their common law agent shall not be required to send a written notice of the right to claim a lien and shall have a lien for the full amount due under their contract, as provided in RCW 60.04.021; or
(b) Who do not contract directly with the owner-occupier or their common law agent shall give notice of the right to claim a lien to the owner-occupier. Liens of persons furnishing professional services, materials, or equipment who do not contract directly with the owner-occupier or their common law agent may only be satisfied from amounts not yet paid to the prime contractor by the owner at the time the notice described in this section is received, regardless of whether amounts not yet paid to the prime contractor are due. For the purposes of this subsection “received” means actual receipt of notice by personal service, or registered or certified mail, or three days after mailing by registered or certified mail, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, or legal holidays.
(4) The notice of right to claim a lien described in subsection (1) of this section, shall include but not be limited to the following information and shall substantially be in the following form, using lower-case and upper-case ten-point type where appropriate.
NOTICE TO OWNER
IMPORTANT: READ BOTH SIDES OF THIS NOTICE CAREFULLY.
PROTECT YOURSELF FROM PAYING TWICE
Re: ……………….. (description of property: Street address or general location.)
AT THE REQUEST OF: ……………….. (Name of person ordering the professional services, materials, or equipment)
THIS IS NOT A LIEN: This notice is sent to you to tell you who is providing professional services, materials, or equipment for the improvement of your property and to advise you of the rights of these persons and your responsibilities. Also take note that laborers on your project may claim a lien without sending you a notice.
OWNER/OCCUPIER OF EXISTING RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
Under Washington law, those who furnish labor, professional services, materials, or equipment for the repair, remodel, or alteration of your owner-occupied principal residence and who are not paid, have a right to enforce their claim for payment against your property. This claim is known as a construction lien.
The law limits the amount that a lien claimant can claim against your property. Claims may only be made against that portion of the contract price you have not yet paid to your prime contractor as of the time this notice was given to you or three days after this notice was mailed to you. Review the back of this notice for more information and ways to avoid lien claims.
COMMERCIAL AND/OR NEW RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
We have or will be providing professional services, materials, or equipment for the improvement of your commercial or new residential project. In the event you or your contractor fail to pay us, we may file a lien against your property. A lien may be claimed for all professional services, materials, or equipment furnished after a date that is sixty days before this notice was given to you or mailed to you, unless the improvement to your property is the construction of a new single-family residence, then ten days before this notice was given to you or mailed to you.
Brief description of professional services, materials, or equipment provided or to be provided:
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON REVERSE SIDE
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YOUR PROTECTION
This notice is sent to inform you that we have or will provide professional services, materials, or equipment for the improvement of your property. We expect to be paid by the person who ordered our services, but if we are not paid, we have the right to enforce our claim by filing a construction lien against your property.
LEARN more about the lien laws and the meaning of this notice by discussing them with your contractor, suppliers, Department of Labor and Industries, the firm sending you this notice, your lender, or your attorney.
COMMON METHODS TO AVOID CONSTRUCTION LIENS: There are several methods available to protect your property from construction liens. The following are two of the more commonly used methods.
DUAL PAYCHECKS (Joint Checks): When paying your contractor for services or materials, you may make checks payable jointly to the contractor and the firms furnishing you this notice.
LIEN RELEASES: You may require your contractor to provide lien releases signed by all the suppliers and subcontractors from whom you have received this notice. If they cannot obtain lien releases because you have not paid them, you may use the dual payee check method to protect yourself.
YOU SHOULD TAKE APPROPRIATE STEPS TO PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY FROM LIENS.
YOUR PRIME CONTRACTOR AND YOUR CONSTRUCTION LENDER ARE REQUIRED BY LAW TO GIVE YOU WRITTEN INFORMATION ABOUT LIEN CLAIMS. IF YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED IT, ASK THEM FOR IT.
(5) Every potential lien claimant providing professional services where no improvement as defined in RCW 60.04.011(5) (a) or (b) has been commenced, and the professional services provided are not visible from an inspection of the real property may record in the real property records of the county where the property is located a notice which shall contain the professional service provider’s name, address, telephone number, legal description of the property, the owner or reputed owner’s name, and the general nature of the professional services provided. If such notice is not recorded, the lien claimed shall be subordinate to the interest of any subsequent mortgagee and invalid as to the interest of any subsequent purchaser if the mortgagee or purchaser acts in good faith and for a valuable consideration acquires an interest in the property prior to the commencement of an improvement as defined in RCW 60.04.011(5) (a) or (b) without notice of the professional services being provided. The notice described in this subsection shall be substantially in the following form:
NOTICE OF FURNISHING PROFESSIONAL SERVICES
That on the (day) day of (month and year) , (name of provider) began providing professional services upon or for the improvement of real property legally described as follows:
[Legal Description is mandatory]
The general nature of the professional services provided is
The owner or reputed owner of the real property is
(Name of Claimant)
(City, State, Zip Code)
(6) A lien authorized by this chapter shall not be enforced unless the lien claimant has complied with the applicable provisions of this section.