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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>How long after I move into my newly renovated home recognizing that was the end of the project does a builder have to place s mechanics lien on my property. I understood the clock runs for 90 days from move in and/or end of project.

How long after I move into my newly renovated home recognizing that was the end of the project does a builder have to place s mechanics lien on my property. I understood the clock runs for 90 days from move in and/or end of project.

CaliforniaLien DeadlinesMechanics Lien

Mechanics lien placed April 9, yesterday. We moved in October 1 of the previous year.

1 reply

Apr 11, 2019
Sorry to hear about your situation. In California, (unlike most states), the deadline to file a mechanics lien runs from the date of completion of the entire project. The statute does attempt to define "completion" by stating that a project is complete when any of the following events occurs, the second event listed is occupation or use by the owner, accompanied by the cessation of labor." So the deadline to timely file a lien is 90 days after the move-in date. This may seem frustrating, but keep in mind, the county recorder's office does just that. They record. They are not in charge of verifying the legitimacy of each claim. So, if a lien has been improperly filed past the deadline date, owners will have two options. One would be to simply send a "demand to release the lien" letter on the lien claimant, stating the reasons why the lien is invalid. If that doesn't work an owner may petition the court for release of the claim under §8480(a). However, before filing the petition, notice must be given to the lien claimant 10 days prior. Once the petition is filed, a hearing will be held to determine the validity of the lien claim. If successful, the prevailing party will not only be entitled to the removal of the lien but for attorney's fees as well. For additional resources, visit the California Lien & Notice Overview page.
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