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Are all liens invalid if the 45 day window for the NTO has lapsed?

FloridaLien DeadlinesPreliminary Notice

I received a Notice to Owner from the tile supplier my contractor chose to use on my home project. The NTO came after the 45 day window, but before the 90 Lien claim window. Does this make the lien invalid because it was after the 45 day NTO window, or should I still be concerned? Final payment to the contractor has not been paid as the project is still ongoing.

1 reply

May 17, 2021

It depends. Generally speaking, yes; if a Florida NTO was sent 45 days past the claimant's first date of furnishing labor and/or materials to the project, the claimant's lien rights are lost.  

But an important thing to note is that the 45 day period runs from the date the supplier in question first provided materials to the project (or when fabrication began for specially fabricated materials); not the project start date itself. Therefore, you should double check the date that the supplier first delivered materials to the project to determine whether the NTO was actually late. 

One other thing to note is that just because you received a preliminary notice, isn't an indication of an actual payment problem. Many contractors and suppliers send a notice on every project, just as a safety precaution if a payment issue arises later on. As long as lien waivers are being collected on the project in exchange for payment, your property will be protected. 

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