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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>On 9/12/18 we sent out 2 invoices covering the work we did at an IDS in Texas. We were a second tier sub and the company that contracted us was bought out by a very well known company nationwide. We have tried for three months to get paid on this project and all we get is the same run around. What are our options on placing a lien on this project to get paid?

On 9/12/18 we sent out 2 invoices covering the work we did at an IDS in Texas. We were a second tier sub and the company that contracted us was bought out by a very well known company nationwide. We have tried for three months to get paid on this project and all we get is the same run around. What are our options on placing a lien on this project to get paid?

TexasRecovery OptionsRight to Lien

The project started in 2016 and suffered many set backs and delays. In June we were finally allowed to start running the Network Cabling and Fiber Optic Cable and all sporting equipment to get the Gym up and going. Part of the contract also included the building of a new Jr High which was going at the start of the new year, but the owner chose to bill the entire project at the end of the project. Both are operational and doing good. East Texas Copy Systems originally got the bid to do the network cabling and we then provided them a price to do the work. They then got purchased by Data Max INC before we finished the project and now starts our battle. What do we do at this point to get paid? ETCS no longer exists and Data Max says that ETCS owes the debt, not them.

1 reply

Nov 20, 2018
I'm very sorry to hear about that. First, it's worth noting that in order to preserve the right to lien, certain notices must be sent monthly in order to preserve the right to lien. If notice is required but not sent, a claimant will lose their ability to file a valid mechanics lien. You can learn a little more about Texas monthly notices here: Texas Mechanics Lien & Notice FAQs. In a situation where a claimant might not have the ability to file a valid mechanics lien, there are other potential options available for recovery. For one, sending a threat of lien - particularly, a Notice of Intent to Lien - can be very effective, regardless of whether the claimant actually intends to file a mechanics lien. A Notice of Intent to Lien acts as a warning, letting the property owner and non-paying party know that if payment isn't made soon a mechanics lien will be filed. Considering the drastic nature of lien filings, often, the mere threat of lien will bring parties to the negotiating table - and sending such a notice to the property owner can help to put extra pressure on the non-paying party. Another option may be to send a demand letter threatening specific legal action (such as breach of contract, unjust enrichment, a claim under the Texas prompt payment laws, or some other legal claim) if payment is not made. Sending such a demand through an attorney could be particularly effective, plus they'll be able to take a deeper look at the situation and advise on other potential recovery options. Finally, litigation or small claims court could be an option. Litigation can be particularly expensive, and there are plenty of risks involved. Small claims court may be less expensive and time consuming, but the level of risk can be even higher, and claims are generally limited to under $10,000. Before making a final decision on which method of recovery would be most appropriate, consulting with a local construction attorney could be very helpful - as mentioned above, they'll be able to further review any documentation and circumstances, determine options for moving forward, and advise on how best to proceed.
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