Sunrise hospitality, hasn’t paid,

2 months ago

I did some work in Lafayette Louisiana. Filled my last draw and Retainage in October 2019 owner sent me a partial payment of in December and still owe me money. He sent me a message at the end of January and said he would get me paid the following week and still no payment.

Senior Legal Associate Levelset
180 reviews

There are a number of different recovery options that can help to recover retainage on Louisiana construction projects. Sending something like an invoice reminder can make sure your invoice stays top of mind for the customer. Or, escalating matters a bit with a demand letter can help, too, by putting a deadline on payment and including legal threats. Or, even going so far as to sent a Notice of Intent to Lien can let them know that the matter is serious and that payment must be made.

Leveraging mechanics lien rights can help recover retainage

As mentioned above, threatening to file a mechanics lien if payment isn’t made can be a strong move for recovering payment. Owners, contractors, and others on the job won’t want to have to deal with a mechanics lien – and it can be just the kick in the rear needed to get them to pay what’s owed.

If you actually intend to pursue a mechanics lien filing, it’s important to keep an eye on the deadlines that will apply. If the overall project was finished/Notice of Termination was filed before January 1, 2020 – then the “old” LA lien deadlines will apply to the job. And, if the overall project carried over into 2020, then the new deadlines to lien will apply.

Old Louisiana lien deadlines for non-GC’s

Under the old lien deadlines, if a Notice of Contract was filed on the job, all subs and suppliers must file within 30 days of the Notice of Termination being filed.

If no Notice of Contract was filed, then the deadline would be 60 o 70 days after completion/when a Notice of Termination was filed.

New Louisiana lien deadlines for non-GC’s

Under the new deadlines, if a Notice of Contract was filed, the deadline to file a mechanics lien will be 30 days after the Notice of Termination. If a Notice of Contract was filed, but if a Notice of Termination wasn’t, then the deadline to file would be 6 months from substantial completion.

If a Notice of Contract wasn’t filed, then the deadline is 60 days after substantial completion.

Additional Louisiana mechanics lien resources

Here are some additional LA lien resources that should be helpful:

– Louisiana Mechanics Lien Guide and FAQs
– How to File a Louisiana Mechanics Lien – Step by Step Guide to Get You Paid

Finally, keep in mind that there are other remedies that might be available. And, as mentioned briefly above, leveraging potential legal claims through threats – like with a demand letter – can speed up payment. In any event, pursuing a claim like breach of contract or under the Louisiana prompt payment laws can help to push for payment. Or, considering using a collections agency might be an option, too.

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.
Your answer or comment:
Are you a Registered Expert?
You are not logged in and will be posting
anonymously. Log in Now
Get answers from construction attorneys and payment experts
120 Character Limit