What states do not allow aggregation of multiple contracts on a job into one lien amount?

8 months ago

We understand FL does not allow aggregating multiple contracts on a project into one lien. Are there other states that also do not allow this, and if so, which states?

Senior Legal Associate Levelset
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When there are multiple contracts, multiple mechanics liens will typically be necessary. This generally isn’t codified in any statute, though. Mechanics lien statutes can’t possibly contemplate every potential situation that might happen on a construction project – including a situation like having more than 1 separate contract for work on the same job. They generally only contemplate a lien being filed on a singular contract. And, filing a lien or liens out of line with statute will often lead to issues with validity and enforceability of a lien.

This is especially true regarding contracts for work where the work is performed at different locations. Mechanics lien claims tie directly to the project property where work was performed – so if a lien claim was filed against one property for work that wasn’t actually done at that location, that’d generally be improper.

What’s more, if the properties are owned by separate owners, one lien would almost certainly be improper since it’d hold a different owner accountable for a debt incurred on a totally unrelated property owned by a third party.

If all of the relevant contracts are for work being done at the same property (or at adjacent properties with the same owner), then there may be some wiggle room. But, the safest way to proceed will generally be to file separate claims for separate contracts.

Ultimately, though, I’m not able to review the remaining 49 states’ mechanics lien laws here at the Expert Center. But, at their core, lien rights were created with the intention of the lien claim tying directly to the individual property being worked on – and, when states go outside of that framework, they’re typically the exception to the norm.

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.
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