We are starting projects with franchisees and they are required to pay a deposit up front and have to pay after project up to 30 days but in Texas can I do a lien that soon? And if I put in contract will this work?
Oct 25, 2018
That's an interesting question. First, it's tough to know whether a given contractual provision will be effective without more context about the expectations and relationships of the parties entering a contract. Even then, it's impossible to predict how someone might honor contractual provisions. Regarding the time to file a lien in Texas - I'll assume you're referring to filing a lien 30 days after work has been completed. Texas does not specifically prohibit filing a lien relatively soon after work has been completed. Instead, the timeframes Texas imposes on filing a mechanics lien are deadlines - they represent the final times by which a lien must be filed. Claimants may be able to file a lien significantly prior to such a deadline, but often, a better idea might be to attempt to resolve the dispute more amicably through negotiation and discussion. If that's ineffective, another option might be to leverage the threat of a lien - and a Notice of Intent to Lien acts a sort of lien warning. It states that if payment isn't made and made soon, a lien claim will be filed. Further, Texas' monthly notice system also provides both a warning system about impending liens and requires that the owner withhold amounts to pay for unpaid sums (i.e. they act as a fund-trapping device). These notices are built right into the Texas Property Code, and they're actually required prior to filing a lien anyway. Thus, many claimants have found that properly sending these notices, discussing disputes with the non-paying customer, and potentially leveraging a Notice of Intent to Lien all work to compel payment without the use of a lien. Plus, at the end of the day, a lien claim is still an option if payment isn't forthcoming.