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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>I have completed a job for an insurance claim. The client has been paid from the insurancecompany. The job has been completed a few months now and has not paid us for total amount. How do I go about filing a lein to be paid for works comepleted as well as for the amount it cost to lein?

I have completed a job for an insurance claim. The client has been paid from the insurancecompany. The job has been completed a few months now and has not paid us for total amount. How do I go about filing a lein to be paid for works comepleted as well as for the amount it cost to lein?

CaliforniaMechanics LienRight to Lien

I am a general contractor. We do residential construction and remodel. My client reached out to me to start an insurance claim job for repairs of the master bathroom. Work was completed with no complaints and no issues. We have sent them a letter via certified mail stating that we have intent to lein if we do not receive payment. In that letter we stated we would work with them with a payment schedule. We then filed an intent to lien form and mailed it via certified mail. Still no intent to pay from the client whom has been paid by the insurance company.

1 reply

Oct 1, 2018
In California, potential lien claimants who contract directly with the property owner are only required to provide a preliminary notice to the construction lender, if any. In situations in which there is no construction lender associated with the project, a direct contractor may proceed to filing the lien with no additional steps required.

The deadline for a direct contractor in California to file a mechanics lien is 90 days from completion of the work of improvement as a whole (or 60 days from the filing of a notice of completion or cessation, if the owner filed one). It is critical to a lien claim to be filed within that statutory deadline. Besides the deadline requirement, there are also strict form, filing, and service requirements that must be met. You can read more about the particular requirements here: https://blog.zlien.com/construction-payment/mechanics-lien-california/

Also, it is important to to note that mechanics liens, are limited to the reasonable value of the work provided by the claimant, or the price agreed to by the claimant and the person who contracted for the work (less payments already received). However, despite the inability to include additional costs on the face of the lien itself, California makes clear the court can award the prevailing party the money paid for recording the lien as costs in a foreclosure action.
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