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Notice of Intent to lien.

CaliforniaNotice of Intent to Lien

I sent out a notice of intent to lien for a property where approved work was performed. I am assuming they are not thrilled about the lien notice because they responded that they will be sending our notice to their attorney (who is also part owner) and that he charges $500 an hour which will be deducted from the job costs. Is this something they are allowed to do? I do not want to respond the wrong way. I am not sure where to move froward from here.

2 replies

Feb 4, 2019
I'm sorry to hear about that. As mentioned above - even where there's a perfectly valid basis for sending a document like a Notice of Intent to Lien, an owner might respond negatively. As for an owner's ability to withhold payments due to the receipt of a Notice of Intent to Lien - unless there is some contractual provision allowing an owner to withhold payment due to their expenses, legal fees, or something of that sort, an owner cannot unilaterally withhold payment simply because they'd like to send a document to their attorney. This would seem to be especially true where the document is merely a warning rather than an actual legal claim or lien claim. Rather, a Notice of Intent to Lien is merely notice that payment hasn't been made, and a warning that a lien claim will be filed if payment doesn't come. At the same time, if much larger sums are at play, squabbling over $500 might not be worthwhile. In any event - how exactly to respond to an owner's anger will ultimately come down to a business decision by the party dealing with the owner. But, when possible, talking out an issue will almost always be a better than letting it snowball into a larger issue - so it could be worthwhile to explain the matter to the property owner and try to reach a resolution that way, before lawyers are involved.
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Oct 1, 2021
how to response to a mechanic lien on my home in virginia
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