What is the guidelines when receiving a preliminary notice that is not filled out correctly?

7 months ago

As a General Contractor, if I receive a California 20-day preliminary notice that is not filled out properly and/or missing information. Does this make the preliminary notice invalid? Also, how many times do I have to try to contact the subcontractor and/or the supplier to have them revised their document and send me a corrected “valid” notice?

Managing Partner Gibbs Giden LLP
42 reviews

There is no bright line answer to your question.  Yes, it is possible that a preliminary notice that is incomplete or contains erroneous information may render the preliminary notice insufficient to preserve the claimant’s mechanics lien, stop payment notice, and/or payment bond rights.  The law, however, is liberally construed in favor of contractors, suppliers, and other proper claimants so it really depends on the nature and quality of the particular problem with the preliminary notice.   As the GC, you may not have any obligation to try to assist the claimant to rectify any issues with the preliminary notice if you have already provided them with the proper job information.


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