Menu
Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>I fired a contractor half way through project. He then contacted my tenant without telling me and asked to come in and finish the work in her apartment (I assume he thought if he did, he could collect full payment). He just sent me a notice to owner. What do I do?

I fired a contractor half way through project. He then contacted my tenant without telling me and asked to come in and finish the work in her apartment (I assume he thought if he did, he could collect full payment). He just sent me a notice to owner. What do I do?

FloridaConstruction ContractPayment Disputes

I fired a contractor half way through project. He then contacted my tenant without telling me and asked to come in and finish the work in her apartment (I assume he thought if he did, he could collect full payment). He just sent me a notice to owner. What do I do?

1 reply

May 31, 2018
That's an interesting question. First, considering a Notice to Owner was sent, I'll note that mechanics liens may only be filed for work that was authorized. If a contractor has been fired but then comes back on the job to perform work without any authorization or approval, the contractor could not file a valid mechanics lien for work following termination. Of course, when work has been authorized by a tenant, the contractor hired by the tenant will have some lien rights - but pursuant to § 713.10(1), a lien may only extend to the right, title, and interest of the person who contracts for the improvement. Thus, if a contract was terminated by an owner, and a new agreement is entered into by the tenant, only the tenant's interest would become lienable for work after the termination. However, when a contractor has made an owner aware of work being performed on their property, if that owner allows work to continue, there's a real chance that the continued work would be considered "authorized" by the owner. In which case, the potential risk of a filed mechanics lien being valid and enforceable would be much greater. In order to again terminate work being performed, sending a written termination to the contractor and keeping a record of that termination would be a good idea. Further, when sending such a termination, it would be wise to reference the original termination of that contractor, and to note that all work performed after that termination was not authorized or contracted for by the owner - and that it will not be paid. Of course, this is just one option, and there could be a number of ways to resolve this issue. Consulting a local construction attorney would be helpful to identify potential courses of action. If the dispute escalates and it looks like a lien claim or some other legal action might be taken, bringing in an attorney would certainly be a wise move. They'll be able to take a closer look a the circumstances surrounding your situation and identify paths for moving forward.
0 likes

Add your answer or comment

Not the answer you were looking for? Check out other Construction Contract topics or ask your own question