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How many times do you have to request a Notice of Commencement from a contractor?

OhioNotice of CommencementPreliminary Notice

I am educating myself on NOC and NOF to better serve the company I work for. My questions are: 1. How many times do you have to request an NOC from the contractor? 2. Does work completed before filing a NOF have to be performed on the job site or does engineering/permit work done in the office satisfy that requirement? 3. If the NOC is filed with county, do I have to request it from the contractor before filing an NOF or can I simply print it from the county website and file the NOF as required.

1 reply

Feb 21, 2019
These are great questions, and being proactive about learning topics like these is a good idea. First, a sub or supplier doesn't have to request a Notice of Commencement at all - they could certainly either neglect to send a Notice of Furnishing (though that'd result in a loss of rights) or retrieve it by some other means (such as finding the Notice of Commencement in the public record). Once a Notice of Commencement is requested, though, a contractor (who has been provided a copy of the Notice of Commencement) is required to provide a copy of it within 10 days to the party who requested it. If a request is made for a copy of the Notice of Commencement but a copy is not given to the requesting party within 10 days, then that requesting party need not send a Notice of Furnishing until 21 days after a copy of that Notice of Commencement is eventually provided. Note, of course, that it's still generally a good idea to send notice anyway as early as practicable, and that a Notice of Commencement can be found in the public record or posted on the job site at a conspicuous location. For the second question, looking at § 1311.05(A) of the Ohio lien statute (which creates the requirement for a Notice of Furnishing), it appears that the timeframe for sending a Notice of Furnishing begins when work is provided at the project address on which the Notice of Commencement is filed. It reads, in part, that notice must be sent when a "...subcontractor or material supplier is performing labor or work or furnishing materials, as named in the notice of commencement or amended notice and at the address listed in the notice or amended notice..." Note, of course, that a mechanics lien claimant who specially fabricates materials may still be entitled to lien regardless of whether the material fabricated is actually incorporated into the improvement (according to § 1311.12(A)(3)), so that creates a bit of an interesting situation with regard to a Notice of Furnishing. Finally, regarding the third question, requesting a Notice of Commencement is not necessary prior to sending a Notice of Furnishing - rather, it's intended to service a party who wishes to send a Notice of Furnishing but can't otherwise get ahold of the Notice of Commencement. So, a party can certainly send a Notice of Furnishing without first requesting the Notice of Commencement from a contractor. Keep in mind, though, that it's important to make sure the correct Notice of Commencement is obtained (on large projects or sites where multiple projects have been completed, it's entirely possible that multiple Notice of Commencements have been filed, and if a Notice of Commencement has been amended, it'd be important to get the most recent information available). For more basic Ohio lien and notice questions, these resources should be valuable: (1) Ohio Lien & Notice FAQs; (2) Ohio Notice of Furnishing: The Why, Who, What, When, and How; (3) What Is a Notice of Commencement in Ohio Construction? Plus, the Ohio lien statute is present on that site as well. Of course, feel free to come back to the Construction Legal Center with any questions you may have!
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