Filing a mechanics lien is a pretty serious business. With strict deadlines and form requirements, attention to detail is paramount. If a mistake is made during a lien filing – an otherwise valid claim can come tumbling down as invalid. An invalid lien claim means you probably will lose your right to get paid, and we’ve seen mere typos destroy lien claims.
Small errors are easy fixes, right? Wrong. Not all states allow for the amendment of lien claims. What’s more, even where lien claims may be amended, there may be a limitation on exactly what can be amended. However, if you need to amend your mechanics lien claim in the state of Iowa, then you might be in luck as the law has recently changed. Read on to find out more.
The amount on Iowa mechanics liens may now be amended
Just recently, legislation was passed in Iowa regarding amending mechanics liens. Previously, Iowa claimants could not amend a lien filing to adjust the amount of their lien. Imagine a claimant’s frustration: if they mistyped the amount of their lien, or if they needed to reduce the amount of a lien for some other reason, a simple amendment wasn’t available. Instead, if a claimant wanted to “amend” their lien filing, they might have to release their entire claim and refile it. And if a deadline was fast approaching, releasing and refiling may not have even been an option due to a lack of available time.
Thanks to Iowa’s newly updated lien law, a mechanics lien can now be easily amended. Not only can a mechanics lien be amended to reduce the amount, but it can be done online! Iowa is one of the few states that have an online lien and notice registry. This takes streamlining to a whole new level.
Important Info – Iowa’s Online Registry, the MNLR
Iowa is the home of the Mechanic’s Notice and Lien Registry (or “MNLR” for short). This online registry is a filing repository for several different kinds of documents, including mechanics liens, and now, amended mechanics liens. Kudos to the state of Iowa for creating such a nifty website for the Iowan construction industry!
Is this really that big of a deal?
Whenever a lien claim can’t be amended, the party who filed the lien will be stuck with tough choices. If there’s still time, a lien claimant might be able to release their lien and refile another one with corrected information. That’s a pain in the neck, and it’s also the best case scenario when lien information must be corrected.
Worst case scenario? A claimant with a lien claim that contained an error could be out of luck! If an issue on the lien claim will be fatal to the filing and it’s discovered too late to release and refile…it could be trouble. The lien could be challenged, and if the issue is glaring, it might even be discharged by a court.
Look, the bottom line is this: Mechanics lien deadlines are strict. So if an issue is found late in the process, there’s a solid chance that there’s no time left to fix the error. Thankfully, making a mistake in Iowa just got a little bit easier to manage.
Free forms and templates available for download
If you need help managing payments on a construction project in Iowa than you’re in luck because Levelset has got you covered. We have over 25 different forms available for you to download for free — from a Payment Application to all 4 types of Lien Waivers and everything in between.