Home>Payment Q&As>What if I missed the dead line for the pre lien, being the sole contractor can I file a lien on the said property?

What if I missed the dead line for the pre lien, being the sole contractor can I file a lien on the said property?

CaliforniaLien DeadlinesMechanics LienPreliminary Notice
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Anonymous contractor
Nov 17, 2020

I have a customer that we he has been paid by the insurance, but he keeps telling us that no he has not been, can I file a lien on his property? We finished the work about 2 weeks ago

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Anonymous contractor
Nov 18, 2020

If your contract is directly with the owner (assuming that no construction loan is involved) you are not required to give preliminary notice. So provided that your work is complete, and you are still within 90 days of project completion (or 60 days from any notice of completion), you may record a lien. As it has only been two weeks though, you might consider a notice of intent to lien or a demand letter first to encourage payment. As these steps, though not required, are cheaper. 

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Anonymous contractor
Nov 21, 2020

If you are in direct contract with the owner then you don't need a pre-lien notice. You are within your time to record and serve the lien. You then have 90 days to file a lawsuit to foreclose on it. You can also sue for breach of contract. The breach of contract case has a longer time limit to sue.

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