should i file preliem as a precursor to mechanics lein

7 months ago

I am a renter of a single family home, have done over $20,000.00 in improvements to property and want to make sure i get paid should i file a 20 day preliem?

Senior Legal Associate Levelset
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California preliminary notices will only be required if the claimant was hired to perform work by someone other than the property owner. Though, if there’s a lender on the project, a direct contractor (hired by the owner) will need to send a preliminary notice to the lender. So, if your work was authorized by someone other than the owner, or if there’s a construction lender present who’s funding the project, then yes – it’d be wise to send a preliminary notice before proceeding with a lien. For more information on CA 20-day preliminary notices: (1) California Preliminary Notice Guide and FAQs; and (2) The Ultimate Guide to California’s 20-Day Preliminary Notice.

With that preliminary notice information in hand, it’s worth mentioning that mechanics liens are generally available to those who have provided a permanent improvement to the project property – but only where their work was authorized by the owner of the property. So, if the owner wasn’t the one who requested the work be done, and if there was no expectation of payment for the improvement, then lien rights may not be the best option – and some other recovery option might be more fruitful.

But, if you are interested in potentially utilizing mechanics lien rights for getting paid, it might be worthwhile to consult with a local California construction attorney. They’d be able to more thoroughly review your circumstances then give advice on how to proceed. On the mechanics lien front, these articles should be helpful, too: (1) California Mechanics Lien Guide and FAQs; and (2) How to File A California Mechanics Lien – Step By Step Guide To Get You Paid.

Disclaimer: The information presented here is not legal advice and should not be construed as such. Rather, this content is provided for informational purposes. Do not act on this information as if it is advice. Further, this post does not create any attorney-client relationship. If you do need legal advice, seek the help of a local attorney.
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