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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>What are my rights in filing a lien against a performance bond if the contractor is not making payments on completed work? They have two outstanding payments from 12/30/16 and 1/16/17? May I put a lien on their performance bond? We did not provide conditional waiver and release since they did not make final payment.

What are my rights in filing a lien against a performance bond if the contractor is not making payments on completed work? They have two outstanding payments from 12/30/16 and 1/16/17? May I put a lien on their performance bond? We did not provide conditional waiver and release since they did not make final payment.

CaliforniaBond ClaimsLien DeadlinesRecovery Options

We provided an emergency service for a contractor and they are now not paying a bill. We have a preliminary lien but the job was concluded in 2016 and to date they have not paid but we did not release waiver as well due to non-payment. We tried to secure payment but without success so now we want to put a lien on their performance bond. Do we have the right to do this?

1 reply

Jan 23, 2018
There are two general remedies available for unpaid parties on public projects in California, a stop notice and a bond claim. Claims for nonpayment are generally made against a payment bond, rather than a performance bond. The time in which claim against the payment bond must be received depends on several factors. If the claimant did not directly contract with the general contractor, the bond claim must be given within 15 days after the recordation of the notice of completion. If no notice of completion was filed, the time period is extended to 75 days after the completion of the entire project.

A stop notice must be received within 30 days from the date of the filing of a notice of completion or cessation. If no such notice was filed, the stop notice must be received within 90 days after the completion or cessation of the project.

The deadline for a lien on private project is, either 60 days from filing of Notice of Completion or Cessation, or if neither are filed, within 90 days from completion of the work. If there is a bond on a private project, the deadlines to make a claim will be set forth in the bond document itself.

Given that the project concluded in 2016, the deadlines above are likely long gone. However, there are still other potential avenues for recovery, including filing suit in court (or small claims court depending on the debt) for breach of contract, or other causes of action.
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