We let the foreclosure date pass us by what can we do to enforce the lien?
Jan 14, 2019
I'm sorry to hear about that. First, it's worth taking a second look at the lien foreclosure deadline in order to be sure that the deadline was, in fact, missed. Missing the lien enforcement deadline has serious consequences, so if there's any chance that the deadline has not actually passed, it should be examined. Nevada, like other states, takes the deadlines relating to lien claims very seriously. Failure to file suit within 6 months of filing a lien in Nevada will result in the loss of the ability to enforce that lien. The Nevada mechanics lien enforcement deadline can be extended - but that requires a written agreement between the lienor and a party with an interest in the property, and that agreement must be recorded prior to the deadline to enforce a Nevada lien.
Due to Nevada's lenient lien filing deadline, it's worth mentioning the possibility of filing a second mechanics lien and releasing the originally filed lien. In Nevada, the deadline to file a lien will be 90 days after the later of (1) the completion of the work, or (2) 90 days of the date the claimant last furnished labor or materials. So, in a situation where a claimant has filed their lien, the lien has expired, but the lien deadline has not yet passed - there may be an opportunity for the lien claimant to file another mechanics lien and release the originally filed lien. After all, it's not uncommon for the completion of a project to extend well beyond a sub-tier claimant's last furnishing. For more information about the Nevada lien filing and enforcement deadlines, this resource should be helpful: Nevada Lien & Notice FAQs.
Of course, even in a situation where the deadline to enforce a filed mechanics lien has truly passed, that doesn't mean that payment can't be recovered. For one, sending a Notice of Intent to Foreclose can be effective. This document warns recipients that if payment isn't made and made soon, a lawsuit will be filed based on the mechanics lien that's been recorded. Because a mechanics lien enforcement suit can have such a drastic and adverse effect on property owners, the mere threat of enforcing a filed lien can work to compel payment - even where the lien claimant doesn't intend to enforce the lien. Beyond a Notice of Intent to Foreclose, if a claimant can't enforce their filed lien, pursuing another option for recovery - outside of mechanics lien laws - could be effective. We discuss other options in depth in this article: Other Options for Recovery. But to name a few - typically, a lawsuit could still be filed is payment is owed but unpaid. Threatening to file suit can often be just as effective as the suit itself would be since no one wants to battle it out in the courtroom. Further, depending on the size of the debt, small claims court could be an option, and small claims court is typically much faster and more cost efficient than traditional litigation - though it can also carry even more risk.