What is a Notice of Completion?
- Notice of Completion Resources
A notice of completion is a document stating that the construction project has reached actual completion. It’s also known as a notice of cessation. Once filed in the county clerk’s office and sent to the appropriate parties, a notice of completion establishes the official “date of completion” for the project.
Who files a Notice of Completion
The property owner files a Notice of Completion. It is not a notice that a General Contractor or subcontractor needs to file.
Why a Notice of Completion matters
In states where a Notice of Completion is used, it can affect the:
- Release of retainage
- Warranty period
- Deadline for lien claims
Release of retainage
Retainage is typically released
Deadline to file a mechanics lien
In California, the mechanics lien deadline for lower-tiered parties from the subcontractor and below (see graphic, right) is typically 90 days from completion of the work. If a Notice of Completion or Cessation is filed, the deadline to file can be reduced to just 30 days.
States using Notice of Completion
How to find out if a Notice of Completion was filed
Ask the County Recorder
The owner is required to file the Notice of Completion with the county recorder where the project took place.
Send preliminary notice
As if there weren’t already enough arguments for why you should send preliminary notice, here’s another one. California requires property owners to send Notice of Completion to any party that sent them preliminary notice.