how to remove mechanic lien

1 year ago

I ask a friend to remodel my bathroom for $3000 (there is no written contract) and paid him $2500 in advance to start. he quite after 2 month and did not finished job and put a $3000 lien on my property . We talked after that and we agreed that if I pay him $600 more, he will release the lien. I paid him $600 more (I have recipt that no balance left) and he agreed to release the lien. Now he is refusing to release the the lien. What should I do?

Senior Legal Associate Levelset

I’m very sorry to hear that. First, in Oklahoma, a mechanics lien may be filed regardless of whether a contract is written or oral. However, that doesn’t mean a mechanics lien can be filed for amounts that are not owed. Mechanics liens are generally available to those who improve property for amounts that are owed and unpaid. Oklahoma is considered a “full price lien” state – meaning, regardless of what amounts have been paid to anyone else on a project, a claimant can file a lien up to the full price of their contract. This does not, however, mean that a claimant is entitled to lien for the full price of their contract when they’ve already received some payments. When a lien claim has been filed for more than what’s owed, a property owner can often have the lien discharged as invalid, and potentially, as fraudulent. If a lien claim was intentionally filed for an amount greater than what’s owed, a lien might be considered fraudulent – and a fraudulent lien claim can result in some serious penalties. Notifying the claimant that their lien is invalid or fraudulent and threatening to file suit if the lien is not released can be effective. This is especially true when using the services of an attorney to send the letter. If the claimant still refuses to release their lien, filing a motion in court alleging the lien as invalid or fraudulent is another route to have the lien released – though it’s typically much easier to have a claimant release the lien themselves. Finally, in Oklahoma, liens can be bonded off – meaning, a bond or other security may be entered into court in order to release the filed lien claim. However, securing a mechanics lien bond can be an expensive option when there are other available routes to having a lien removed. To learn more about bonding off a lien, this article should be helpful: Primer on Mechanics Lien Bonds and Bonding Off A Mechanics Lien. This article should provide some insight, too: A Mechanics Lien Was Filed on My Property – What Do I Do Now?

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