Illinois Legal Questions

This page lists recently asked construction legal questions from contractors and suppliers in Illinois. Click any question to see more information and legal advice from attorneys.

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Illinois
I,am in the process of selling my real estate proerty with a city lien on property. I, will pay the adminstration fee fine off at closing from the sell of real estate property. My question is can this be done and file for a release at this time. Or will I, have to pay off prior to going to closing. What is the best way to get clear tile in this case....Read More
IllinoisLien Releases
I have question. I'm homeowner, and found contractor through Craigslist for bathtub refinish in my property. I paid deposit and left technician alone on my property, and back when he called me and said work is done. But it was not, he didn't done it, he ruined my bathtubs at all, also floor near bathtubs was in paint. He said if I would not pay to him - he will put mechanics lien on my house. So how's relevant is it? From his side - he did his job, but from my side, he ruined everything and I need to replace a bathtub. I already did couple estimation with others construction after this incident. From my side I have lost (deposit, my time, my bathrooms), from his side - he spend time and paint. So Is it eligible to put a lien on someone property without court decision?...Read More
IllinoisDefects
This property was sold without our lien being satisfied. How is this possible?...Read More
Illinois
COOK COUNTY ILLINOIS QUESTION 1) DO I have to have a cover letter along with the Mehcanics Lien Form in COOK COUNTY IL ? Is the Chancery Form and it says, " Pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/15-1504, effective Oct 1, 2010, an extra $50.00 will be charged for case in this category. There is a box to check Pro se 99500 and box to check Pro Se I have read and agree to the terms of the Clerk's Office Electronic Notice Policy and choose to opt in to electronic notice from the Clerk's Office for this case at this email address. A line is left to fill in email address. ( Read Pro Se means to " represent yourself" QUESTION 2) We had a $1700 VERBAL AGREEMENT with customer (nothing was signed). Customer refusing to pay. We do have a signed contract. Our contract states, in small print "Any alteration or deviation from above specifications involving extra costs will be executed only upon written orders and will become an extra charge over and above the estimate." Do we have a case to file this verbal lien since the work was done? ...Read More
Illinois
I have a contractor who didn't install a water heater to the manufacturer's specs and it is not functioning as designed to operate. This was confirmed with discussions with the manufacturer during phone conversations with them. The contractor damaged walls, no hot water, installed connecting gas lines, not per the agreement, and connecting hot/cold water lines to the correct inputs, punctured electrical lines in my wall from drilling holes. I told the contractor to remove the item out of my house, per his original offer to me. He never responded to my repeated attempts for him to pick it up. Consequently, He took the easy way out and filed a Mechanic's Lien against me. What recourse do I have to object this assertion, based on the true facts to this case?...Read More
IllinoisMechanics Lien
Thanks for your time. I spoke with Alec on 10/13/20, he was great and suggested me writing to your team after hearing our circumstances. This is a novel, sorry for the long read. We at PRIME CONSTRUCTION want to file a Mechanics Lien for $1694 against Julie & Jim Thomson of Barrington, IL/COOK COUNTY. We feel the need to represent ourselves because we didn't make much profit on this job. We have had a need to file a lien of any kind before. We like your platform and what you represent. Maybe in the future we can sign up for your services. It's something for us to really consider. We don't do 500 jobs per year but when we "get there" we can sign up. We have many friends in the construction industry so we will be sharing how this goes. ABOUT US: We are a whole home remodeling General Contractors, our name: PRIME CONSTRUCTION. We at PRIME have one employee, Brother Brian , and Husband Kevin, General contractor, Wife/Annemarie/Designer/ Office Administrator, located in Palatine, IL, COOK COUNTY. PRIME has been in business 40 yrs, We loyal wonderful customers and also have a team of loyal subcontractors that we have had long relationships with. This situation we are in is due to a VERBAL AGREEMENT with the Home owner: Single Family Owner Occupied . Contract signed May 8, 2020, job was started May 20, 2020 and completed July 20, 2020. Client has not paid balance upon completion and then, wife JULIE THOMSON, called our office 2 weeks after completion, on Saturday AUGUST 8, 2020, stating THOMSON's they don't feel like that have to pay additional work husband JIM THOMSON verbally agreed to in the amount of $1700 and twisted PRIME's words. Client after discussion with PRIME/Kevin said THOMSON's only had $60,000 to spend and PRIME new that. JULIE in that same conversation said she will need some time to SAVE & PAY. PRIME WAITED, no payment. Details follow. PRIME never heard from Thomson's after that so a Demand for Payment letter was sent Aug 29, 2020. ISSUES: Clients never received the letter because there were issues with delivery, dog interference, next business day re-attempt for delivery was forgotten by USPS, USPS Supervisors located the letter on USPS shelf at post office. That same Demand for Payment Letter was REsent Oct 2, 2020 and received. Client responded with a return letter. Client made a copy of our letter highlighted with additional hand written comments saying PRIME isn't telling the truth and PRIME's contract was vague in regards to drywall repair but a check for $390 was included with the response letter. PRIME won't cash this check. We will wait for full payment of $1700. The THOMSON job had a few credits at the end of the project. Contract/signed was originally for $60, 387.00 plus $1700 for additional work. SIGNED CONTRACT states: 1/3 down with payouts to be determined and balance upon completion. THOMSON's gave PRIME three equal payouts. First payout at signing for $20,000. All checks were made for $20,000 each, a total of $60,000 was paid. $60, 387 was the signed contract total PLUS $1700 was in added in work ( there were a few credits on the job too but $1700 is now STILL OWED). Up until receiving THOMSON's response letter on Oct 8, 2020, Thomson's only had paid PRIME an even $60,000 (THOMSON's "said" budget)( ALL RED FLAGS LISTED LEAD TO THIS $60,000 budget) . Adding a $390 payment made the ORIGINAL balance paid in full but did not include the $1700 additional work. PRIME WON'T CASH the $390. Details follow. QUESTION 1) All of our contracts state in fine print the following: "Any alteration or deviation from above specifications involving extra costs will be executed only upon written orders and will become an extra cost over and above the estimate. " We had a VERBAL agreement with customer BEFORE we began this project. VERBAL agreement was on May 20, 2020 in the amount of $1700 for ADDITIONAL DRYWALL REPAIR (What is owed is and PRIME wants a lien for $1694. Details follow). We did NOT have the client sign a Additional Work Order for this additional drywall repair. We gave the customer 2 invoices through the job reflecting the additional VERBALLY AGREED UPON work and $1700 charge specifically for drywall repair. The invoices were clear and never contested by the customers throughout the job from our start date of May 20, 2020 thru completion July 20,2020. Completed project was beautiful, no complaints on materials, workmanship, timeliness , personalities etc from the customer. Customer complaint about $1700 overage came 2 weeks AFTER the job was complete where clients basically said they changed their mind and were retracting their verbal agreement and said in a phone conversation ( they called us) that the EXTRA DRYWALL WORK for $1700 for removed paneling/drywall damage repair should've been included and Prime KNEW they wanted "paneling removed" requiring the additional repair from the onset of the project. Later a letter from the client to PRIME, stated that our contract is vague in regards to the drywall repairs but sent 390.00 check. More details follow. QUESTION 2 : In our REVISED but original signed contract to the customer, under GENERAL CONSTRUCTION Line 4, it states: Patch and finish removed drywall as necessary. In our FIRST presented contract, unsigned contract under FINISHING: Line 1: Existing paneling/wainscot to removed but can be removed for additional charge. Details follows. Since the $1700 charge is the fee for the issue at hand: ADDITIONAL DRYWALL REPAIR, does this statement clear the client of any additional VERBALLY AGREED UPON drywall repairs IF WE DIDN'T HAVE THE CUSTOMER SIGN A ADDITIONAL WORK ORDER? Client DOESN'T contest that they verbally agreed to the additional charges of $1700. They just NOW say that WE KNEW (Prime Construction, specifically our designer Wife, knew (not true), that they, the Thomson's, wanted some paneling removed which caused the need for the additional drywall repair and SHOULD HAVE been included in the contract price. (clients removed the paneling themselves). Details follow. QUESTION 3: The verbal agreement was made by husband Jim Thomson. Contract was made out to Jim & Julie Thomson. JULIE Thomson signed the contract, JULIE wrote all the checks for payouts for the project. We now see on Cook County Recorder of deeds site that JULIE is ONLY listed as homeowner on the property. JULIE is the person contesting the charges and made the phone call to us two weeks after the job was complete contesting the added $1700 charge etc though JULIE was aware of the verbal acceptance of the additional charge. If JULIE is the listed as owner of the property but husband Jim made the verbal agreement, is Julie, the property owner, not liable for the additional debt? QUESTION 4: Sworn statement of listing all subcontractors on the the job. Do the all the subs have to sign this sworn statement? If so do they ALL have to sign in front of a notary? Or do we PRIME write a statement just listing all subs on the job and then have it notarized? What makes it a sworn statement? We had two subs on this job, one drywall sub and one flooring sub. Do we attach the subs invoices to the lien? QUESTION 5: On the Mechanics Lien FORM itself, do we have to list every detail on labor, materials etc?? OR do you advise attaching a copy of the actual signed contract? And maybe a copy of the first contract that states inclusions that the second revised contract did not have since that is the issue at hand??? Details follow. QUESTION 6: Super lien Cook County IL , presenting Demand for Payment with in 30 of job being completed...PRIME sent certified in 39 days but the mail attempt was intercepted by dog and NOT redelivered next business day. NO return certified letter from USPS prompted tracking check in and then series of events lead to certified letter being forgotten at USPS for 30 days. Though USPS said a pink slip was left for customer and they didnt pick up in 10 days. USPS forgot to sent PRIME back the letter. RE-DELIVERY of original dated letter was successful at 69 days after job completed. Customer sent letter back within a week with a check for $390. PRIME will NOT cash this check as partial payment, we want payment of $1700 IN FULL. Heard from Alec we voluntarily or unvoluntarily waive our rights to lien if we cash this check. Alec said to get advice from your team. True?? QUESTION 6: 2 year window for customer to pay us or customer come after PRIME. What dangers do contractors face when the customer twists the words, stipulations as in this case and presents themselves or their story in front of the judge, if it goes that far?? QUESTION &: It is NOT written on our contracts, legal fees paid by customer for this type of circumstance or that % accrues on unpaid balance. In the future does Illinois have any stipulations that can be included on the contract for this? And can we still collect % or legal fees due to non-payment even if it is NOT stipulated on the signed contract. QUESTION 7: I called COOK COUNTY RECORDER OF DEEDS OFFICE because I couldn't find a Mechanics Lien form on their web site. I found one form that we can fill in the COUNTY etc. But I need more room on the form if I have t list ALL materials etc. Can I make my own form that looks likes the downloadable form?? Or is that illegal??? Do forms need to be copied right?? QUESTION 8: Does the date of NOTARY fall in the deadline for the 4 months to file a mechanics lien. OR is the stamp of the FILING DATE, the date we have to fall in the 4 month deadline to file for a mechanics lien. THE STORY: Hard to make this brief but will try. Looking back on things we don't think the clients had any intention on paying more the $60,000 for this project because that is all THOMSON's WANTED to pay. Can't assume, but worth mentioning. THE STORY: CLIENTS: Julie and Jim THOMSON (no P) mid 30's, 4 little kids 6mos to approx 8yrs old, 1 old female black labrador dog with a big bark but gentle gal, husband Jim TV prop guy who was laid off, wife Julie school teacher. HOUSE: 1970's , 3 bedroom ranch house with full basement. Wife Julie said she physically went to and looked at 200 properties before buying this first home. Said she was looking for the best deal and the realtor was super patient. Jim, husband made this comment about his wife when PRIME had presented 10+ design layouts from January thru May to the couple, which required patience. (THIS WAS A SECOND RED FLAG). Wife, Julie chimed in an said she was looking for the right place for the right price they could grow in. Thomson was a REFERRAL was from Julie's mom. PRIME bid Julie's moms kitchen project about 2 yrs ago. PRIME did drawings for the Mom's kitchen remodel and PRIME wrote up a proposal but Julie's Mom use a family friend to do the work BUT used our vendors. We didnt get that job. Julies mom called us and asked if PRIME still did FREE CAD drawings because her daughter Julie wanted their kitchen remodeled and we did a nice job designing. MOM explained she hired a contractor church friend who lost their job to install her kitchen that's why PRIME didnt get the job several yrs ago. (THAT WAS THE FIRST RED FLAG we ignored) Our initial first meeting to Julie and Jim THOMSON's home was in late January 2020. Both Owners of Prime Construction, lead Contractor Kevin and Wife Designer Annemarie went on initial bid together. Prime gathered the ideas Thomson's had and discussed options. The house had not been updated since the 1970's, everything was original except a patio door. There was 1960's-1970's wood paneling on one wall, approx 8'H x 22'L, near their family room fireplace. Thomson's mentioned wanting to remove the paneling or paint it. PRIME, Kevin told the couple at the initial meeting that, "You never know how much glue may have been used in installing that paneling so there is no way of knowing what kind of damage there will be to the drywall once the paneling is removed and there would be an additional cost to removing the paneling and drywall repair." Jim at that time said they were still thinking about if they wanted to remove it or paint it. PANELING REMOVAL WAS NEVER DISCUSSED AGAIN. The couple at that first meeting said they had a $60,000 budget. PRIME told the couple there are always variances during a remodel and to expect approximately 10%-20% in additional costs in possible surprises that can arise in the remodeling process. Once walls are opened up or removed there can be circumstances that require more work etc. The couple understood. PRIME Designer Annemarie, went back and forth with ideas with the Thomson's for a few months. PRIME did about 10+ layouts ideas and paneling removal in the family room was NEVER DISCUSSED after that first meeting. EVERY visit to the Thomsons home was ALWAYS focused on the kitchen floor layout, PERIOD. Thomson's went to HDepot for a measure and MORE additional kitchen layouts and cabinet pricing. Thomson's chose a HomeDepot layout which was a similar design PRIME came up with early in the design stage. Cabinets and materials were chosen from PRIME's vendors. PRIME was very okay with going with the HomeDepot layout. PRIME discussed options with the Thomson's and the WHOLE project DID NOT fall in their $60,000 budget. PRIME offered the idea of doing the project in PHASES. PHASE 1 and PHASE 2. Thomson's liked the idea and decided on PHASE 1. PRIME drew up a contract that included everything in PHASE 1. The FIRST PHASE 1 contract presented to Thomson's, came out to be $71, 810.00. That first contract included, under HEADING: FINISHING: Line 1: Existing paneling / wainscot to remain but can be removed for additional charge. Thomson's said that $71, 810.00 was too high and asked what could be done to lower the contract price to come closer to $60,000 . (THIRD RED FLAG) Thomson's asked if they could do some of the work like demolition, debris removal and painting. PRIME presented the SECOND contract for PHASE 1 to accommodate the couples request, which pulled out as many things as possible to lower the price. REMOVED FROM THIS SECOND CONTRACT WAS, under FINISHING: Line 1: Existing paneling / wainscot to remain but can be removed for an additional charge, and all painting and all demo and debris removal along with a few other things. This SECOND CONTRACT FOR PHASE 1 came out to be $60,387.00 which was signed by JULIE THOMSON. . This contract included full gutted kitchen to be replaced with new materials and installation, replacing the entire first floor of the home with new solid continuous wood floors of the ranch style home which would accommodate PHASE 2 in the future, reconfiguration of the kitchen island/sink, removing fake ceiling beams, removing part of a bearing wall and opening it up. This second proposal PRIME presented DID NOT INCLUDE THE VERBAGE THE FIRST CONTRACT STATED ABOUT THE PANELING BEING REMOVED FOR AN ADDITIONAL COST BECAUSE THOMSON'S WANTED TO PULL AS MANY THINGS OUT TO COME CLOSE TO THEIR $60,000 budget. The second proposal was a total of $60, 387.00 NOT INCLUDING PANELING REMOVAL, because IT WAS OFF THE TABLE because there would be a hidden cost to possible repairs of the drywall. The couple KNEW per PRIME's conversation at our first meeting. it would cost more and the reasons why. After the contract was signed PRIME gave Thomson's a window of time, one week, to get all the demo done and removed. PRIME did not visit the job during demo but said we would be available by phone to answer any questions. PRIME was NEVER called with any inquiries about the paneling removal or cost. Demolition was done by Jim THOMSON and a few of his friends. WHEN PRIME arrived on the job site one week later on Monday MAY 18, 2020, Kevin saw THOMSON's HAD REMOVED THE PANELING. At that meeting PRIME, Kevin, told JIM THOMSON that PRIME's drywall sub would need to come by and give a pricing to repair the drywall. A few days later PRIME, Kevin, told JIM THOMSON that the repair would be $1700. JIM THOMSON on MAY 20, 2020 VERBALLY AGREED to a extra $1700 drywall repair. Details to follow. PRIME has never allowed a customer to demo, help out etc nor will PRIME ever do it again to extend cost savings to the customer. PRIME gives fair prices as it is. PRIME liked the couple and wanted to help them out. CIRCUMSTANCES AROUND THE JOB: PRIME won the bid because of our price, referral base, quality of work and materials through quality vendors and THE BIG PUSH was Julie THOMSON's sister had a destination wedding planned for summer 2020 and because COVID19 hit, the wedding site had to be changed. The THOMSON's wanted to hold the wedding event at their home IF they could remodel the kitchen and remodel the entire first floor of their home. It was a tight timeline because of the possibility of risky lead times due to Covid19 but PRIME was confident in our team and vendors. PRIME excepted the timeline and the contract was signed. PRIME nor the THOMSON's had no issues or hold ups. TImeline: CONTRACT SIGNED: Friday May 8, 2020 DEMOLITION: Jim Thomson had Saturday May 9 thru Sunday May 17, 2020 to demo the project and remove all debris. PRIME BEGINS: Monday May 18, 2020 PRIME Owner/Lead Contractor sees that paneling is removed and drywall damage has been done. Conversation with Jim Thomson happens telling Jim there will be additional dry wall repair necessary to fix wall that was under paneling and PRIME's Drywall Sub needs to price repair. MAY 20, 2020 Kevin (PRIME) tells Jim THOMSON repair cost is $1700. Jim fusses but agrees to charge and Jim says "Ok, but no more charges". PRIME's one employee, Brother/ Brian, was present and witnessed this conversation with Jim agreeing to PRIME's $1700 drywall repair charge. OTHER THINGS TO NOTE: During the project PRIME's employee, Brother/Brian made notice of other sub contractors ( not Prime's) hired to prepare for the THOMSON's wedding event. The comment that was made early on in the 2 month job was, " Jeese I thought the Thomson's were super nice people but they seem like real "Chislers" because......" Our PRIME employee was in ears way of conversations with the customer and other subs during our 6 week project at the Thomson's . One after another subs were getting chewed on with the customer wanting MONEY OFF, REFUNDED, DISCOUNTED, ETC for minor inconveniences or issues etc. ( ANOTHER RED FLAG, we ignored) It was brought to our attention because it seemed to be a pattern, hence the nick name given. PRIME had no clue we would also have an issue getting paid, but here we are. ...Read More
IllinoisMechanics Lien
Who cancels a mechanics lein I filed a mechanics lein on property I have done work on. If I'm paid or if I want to cancel the lein, who has the authority to do so...Read More
IllinoisLien Releases
We have filed a lien with no response. The homeowner owes us 15k ...Read More
IllinoisLien DeadlinesLien Foreclosure
We have a customer who hasn't paid us. We were last on the job on 7/24/2020. Do we still have lien rights?...Read More
IllinoisLien Deadlines
The title company has a check ready for pick up. However, we had to cancel the mechanics lien first. It was uploaded to the county. How long will it takes before we have documentation that it was uploaded, so I can send this document to the title company to receive our check. ...Read More
IllinoisLien Releases
we issued a lien, they paid, they are asking us to release the lien ...Read More
IllinoisLien Releases
IL prevailing wage question: What is the percentage for WC insurance, liability insurance and umbrella coverage for a painter. ...Read More
Illinois
General contractor wants to file a lien against commercial property owner for work done for tenant No written contract with Landlord or tenant...Read More
Illinois
I worked 4 months with one department and 43 days with the other department and haven't been paid from neither and it's been over 91 days...Read More
IllinoisPayment Disputes