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Home>Levelset Community>Legal Help>When is the deadline to enforce a Missouri Mechanic's Lien, or, how long is my Lien effective?In Missouri, an action to enforce a mechanics lien must be initiated within 6 months after filing the lienDoes this mean you have to enforce the lien for payment within 6 month of filing the lien? If you do not do this is the lien still valid?

When is the deadline to enforce a Missouri Mechanic's Lien, or, how long is my Lien effective?In Missouri, an action to enforce a mechanics lien must be initiated within 6 months after filing the lienDoes this mean you have to enforce the lien for payment within 6 month of filing the lien? If you do not do this is the lien still valid?

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Lien was filed May 19, 2017. Is it still valid if It has not been enforced? What does it mean to enforce within 6 months of filing?

1 reply

Jul 11, 2019
As stated in your question, an action to enforce a Missouri mechanics lien must be initiated within 6 months from the date the lien was filed. Failure to do so extinguishes the lien and renders it unenforceable.

This provision is specifically set forth by § 429.170, which states:

All actions [to enforce a lien] shall be commenced within six months after filing the lien, and prosecuted without unnecessary delay to final judgment; and no lien shall continue to exist by virtue of the provisions of said sections, for more than six months after the lien shall be filed, unless within that time an action shall be instituted thereon, as herein prescribed. [emphasis added]


Missouri does not allow the mechanics lien enforcement deadline to be extended, so if the 6-month deadline is missed, the lien no longer encumbers the property and may not be validly enforced. Enforcement means initiating a foreclosure lawsuit.

If the lien may no longer be enforced, it doesn't necessarily mean there are no options to collect. Missouri allows lawsuits for the payment of money through contract / collection of debts to be initiated up to 10 years after the event giving rise to the action - it's just that the property will no longer secure the amounts owed.
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