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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>I wish to file a simple lien in Gwinnett County, Georgia for $460. What are my cost and can I add in these fees to my recovery.

I wish to file a simple lien in Gwinnett County, Georgia for $460. What are my cost and can I add in these fees to my recovery.

GeorgiaMechanics LienRight to Lien

I am a land surveyor. The client informed me after the survey was completed that he wants to sale the land and that some day in the future after the land sales he will pay me. I threatened to lie him and got $300, but he still owes me $460. He emailed me in writing that if I would take the $300 he would pay the balance the following week. It has been 2 weeks since he owed the balance.

1 reply

Jul 9, 2019
I'm sorry to hear you've had some trouble getting paid here. First, I should mention Levelset has a great step-by-step guide for filing a Georgia mechanics lien, which you can read here: Georgia Mechanics Lien: How to File Your Claim. Further, note that there's a free downloadable template for a Georgia lien claim here: Georgia Mechanics Lien Form. For an exact price on recording fees, you can call the county recorder of the county where the lien will be filed (which will be the same county where the work was done). Of course, there are always third-party service providers, including Levelset, who can help with lien filings.

With all that in mind, there are a few ideas worth noting. For one, note that filing a mechanics lien can be a little costly, especially if a third-party provider or an attorney will be used. So, for lien claims for low dollar amounts, it might not always make economic sense to pay for filing a lien claim. Plus, even when doing it yourself, filing fees might cut into any potential recovery.

It's also worth noting that the cost of filing a lien likely cannot be included in the lien claim, itself. Generally, mechanics lien claims are limited to the amount owed but unpaid for work performed. Georgia does allow for some interest to be included in a lien claim, if appropriate, but it can get dicey - and it typically isn't worth risking the validity of the claim. You can learn more about what can and can't be included in a Georgia lien claim, as well as other Georgia lien requirements, here: Georgia Mechanics Lien Overview.

Finally, keep in mind that while surveyors are entitled to mechanics lien rights in Georgia, generally, lien rights will arise when property is altered or improved by the work done by the lien claimant. So, while surveyors are entitled to lien, keep in mind that the property must generally be improved in order for lien rights to arise - regardless of who's claiming the lien. It may be a moot point, but it's worth taking into consideration before proceeding with a lien claim.
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