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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>I am a C 27 license California contractor. I took on a job that was a verbal to be time and materials .He owns his own company and supply warehouse. So some product and labor was going to come from him. We had a long time friendship. So I felt comfortable going into this with him. However since he’s received his bill he is disputing all of it even though I have very good documentation of everything we used and strong documentation on all are hours . I have every invoice and receipts for all products , with his home being the place it was delivered . I am having Di faculty time collecting . I have tex and emails of are correspondence trough out job . How do I collect ?

I am a C 27 license California contractor. I took on a job that was a verbal to be time and materials .He owns his own company and supply warehouse. So some product and labor was going to come from him. We had a long time friendship. So I felt comfortable going into this with him. However since he’s received his bill he is disputing all of it even though I have very good documentation of everything we used and strong documentation on all are hours . I have every invoice and receipts for all products , with his home being the place it was delivered . I am having Di faculty time collecting . I have tex and emails of are correspondence trough out job . How do I collect ?

CaliforniaRecovery Options

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Dec 20, 2018
I'm really sorry to hear about that - unfortunately, we see situations like this one come through the CLC pretty often. When it comes to nonpayment and construction, the strongest tool available will typically be a mechanics lien. There are definitely other options for recovery, which we discuss in this article: Don’t Want to File a Mechanics Lien? Here Are 5 Other Options. Further, the mere threat of lien is often enough to compel payment, too. When an owner and/or a customer are put on notice that a lien might be coming, it creates pressure on the customer to pay what's due. But first- let's discuss whether a mechanics lien might be an available option for recovery. As mentioned above, mechanics liens are construction's most powerful collection tool. This is because liens put the property owner's title on the line. We discuss how liens get claimants paid in this article, but for now, let's stick to the deadlines and requirements of a California lien. In California, claimants do not need to have a written contract in order to lien. Using a written contract is always a better option, and the CLSB might not be happy about not using a written contract, but under the California Civil Code, construction contracts need not be in writing to give rise to lien rights. Next, it's important to look at the deadline, because once that passes, no mechanics lien may be filed. In California, the deadline to file a mechanics lien is after completion of the direct contract, and before the earlier of: (1) 90 days after completion of the work; or (2) 60 days after the owner records a Notice of Completion or Cessation (if one is recorded at all). During this timeframe, claimants often find it a good idea to warn the property owner that, if payment isn't made, a mechanics lien will be filed. One of the most effective tools to do this is with a Notice of Intent to Lien, which zlien discusses in this article: What Is a Notice of Intent to Lien and Should You Send One? Essentially, it just acts as a warning shot - but considering the drastic nature of lien claims, it can help spur recovery before a lien filing becomes necessary. Note though that this does not in any way effect the lien deadline - so attempts to recover without a lien claim are great, but if the 90 (or 60) day deadline is growing close, it might be time to start thinking about a lien filing. Finally, in the case that a lien claim is not available, there are other tools that might help recovery like sending a demand letter through an attorney or taking the customer to small claims court. zlien discusses those options and more in this article: Other Options When A Lien Is Not Available. Lastly, these resources may also be helpful: California Lien and Notice FAQs and How to File a California Lien.
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