Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>i did 3 painting jobs as a subcontractor, do i sue the other company i got the job from or can i put a lien on one property for all money owed to me

i did 3 painting jobs as a subcontractor, do i sue the other company i got the job from or can i put a lien on one property for all money owed to me

ColoradoLawsuitMechanics LienPayment DisputesRight to Lien

first job there was problem with contract after idid half the work and company i sub from receieved 2500 deposit and gave me nothing for work me and helper did for 4 days. second job contract sent unskilled painter to paint 28 new doors. customer was diapointed. he hired me to fix the problem and after 8 days wor of me and helper didnt get paid. third job contractor paid me a portion and still owe balance forth job been over a month and contractor keeps saying he waiting on check from bank

1 reply

Mar 11, 2019
It's definitely frustrating and disappointing to continually be in a position in which you are required to wait and wait for payment for work that you have already accomplished.

Mechanics liens provide protection by encumbering the specific property improved itself. This means that a mechanics lien can only be validly claimed against the property where the work was performed - if there are multiple different jobs, on multiple different properties, a lien for each distinct project is generally required, even if the work was done for a single GC or other hiring party. This is especially true when there are different owners of the different properties, and the work was done pursuant to different agreements.

In Colorado, a potential lien claimant must send a notice of intent to lien to the property owner at least 10 days prior to actually filing the lien itself. And, unless a notice of extension of time to file lien is filed with the county, the lien must be filed within 4 months after the last day labor or materials were provided to the project, however that time period may be modified in some circumstances. Laborers who did not provide materials to the project, must file a lien after his/her last labor was performed and within 2 months of the completion of the improvement. Additionally, if the project was on a one or two family home, the normal 4-month period in which a mechanics lien may be filed is shortened to 2 months if there is a bona fide purchaser of the dwelling.

Sometimes, sending the notice of intent to lien by itself is enough to prompt payment, without needing to go ahead and file the lien itself. At the very least it may be able to jumpstart some communication regarding past-due payment.

There is also possibilities to file suit to recover the payments due. Potential actions could be brought pursuant to breach of contract, unjust enrichment, or other causes of action. If the amount due meets the jurisdictional requirements, a suit may be filed in small claims court to decrease the potential time and cost associated with the lawsuit, but otherwise a full-blown lawsuit will likely be needed. While individuals may represent themselves, this is rarely a good idea - and LLCs or corporations are generally obligated to be represented by an attorney.

I hope you get paid.
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