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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>We finished a remodel job (flooing, tongue and grove etc.) in Tenn in Nov. The owner has not paid us. When is the deadline to file a lein?

We finished a remodel job (flooing, tongue and grove etc.) in Tenn in Nov. The owner has not paid us. When is the deadline to file a lein?

TennesseeLien Deadlines

After completion owner blocked our phone calls and has not responded to many emailed requests for payment. Work was in TN and he lives in SC.

1 reply

Feb 25, 2019
Good question! In Tennessee, the deadline to file a mechanics lien is based on a multitude of factors - including who the claimant was hired by, and whether the property is residential or commercial in nature. For contractors hired directly by the property owner on residential jobs, the deadline to file a lien will be 90 days from the completion of the project (unless a Notice of Completion was filed by the owner, in which case, the deadline is a mere 10 days from that filing). For contractors hired by the owner on a non-residential job, the deadline to file a lien is also 90 days if no Notice of Completetion is filed (and shortened to 30 days if a Notice of Completion was filed). For more background on Tennessee deadlines (including those of subcontractors), or more info on Tennessee lien claims and notice is general, this resource should be helpful: Tennessee Lien & Notice FAQs. Of course, outside of the mechanics lien process, there are always other options for recovery, which zlien discusses in this article: Other Options For Recovery When a Lien is Not Available. Further, regardless of whether the right to lien is intact or whether some deadline has passed, the mere threat of a mechanics lien will often be enough to compel payment. zlien discusses that principle here: What is a Notice of Intent to Lien?
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