Louisiana Preliminary Notice Guide and FAQs

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About Louisiana Preliminary Notices

Louisiana Preliminary Notice Rules


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Preliminary Notices Are Usually Required

Whether or not notice must be given prior to the filing of a lien statement in Louisiana depends on the project type and claimant’s role in the project prerequisite to filing a valid mechanics lien.


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DAYS
GCs Must Send Notice

Prime Contractors must record a Notice of Contract before beginning work on a project of more than $100,000. Failure to do so will extinguish lien rights. A Notice of Lien Rights may also be required (more on that below).


N/A
Subcontractors Not Required to Send Notice

75
DAYS
Suppliers Must Send Notice

If hired by a subcontractor, the notice must be sent within 75 days of the last day of each month of furnishing labor and/or materials.

Equipment Lessors must deliver a notice to the owner, and the timing of that notice will depend on when the project began (more on that below).


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Notice Cannot be Sent Late

When required to give notice in Louisiana, failure to do so within the correct time period is often fatal to the lien claim. There's a little leniency with Notice of Lease, though. More on that below.


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Send to Owner, GC, or Record (Depending on Notice)

Notices must typically be mailed, but a Notice of Contract must be filed. Read the below FAQs for more info.

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Preliminary Notice Only Required for Equipment Lessors and Material Suppliers

Generally in Louisiana, preliminary notice is not required in order to make a bond claim. However, an exception exists for equipment lessors in all cases, and for material suppliers to subcontractors if the contract has been recorded.

It is generally best practice, however, to send preliminary notice even if not specifically required to provide project visibility.


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N/A

On public jobs, any claims for non-payment are made against the general contractor's bond. Since GCs will not make a claim against their own bond for non-payment, they do not have bond claim rights, and have no preliminary notice requirement.


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No Notice Required From Subcontractors

Subcontractors on public projects do not need to send preliminary notice in order to make a claim against the provided payment bond.


10 or 75
DAYS
Equipment Lessors and Material Suppliers to Subs Must Provide Notice

Equipment Lessors are required to provide preliminary notice no more than 10 days after the movables are first placed at the site for use in work.

Additionally, a material supplier to a subcontractor must send a notice of non-payment to the general contractor within 75 days from the last day of each month in which the material was delivered.


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Notice Cannot be Sent Late

When preliminary notice is required in Louisiana it may not be sent late, and is only effective if sent before the statutory deadline.


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Send to GC or Public Entity

Equipment lessors must provide the public entity with a copy of the lease. Material suppliers to subcontractors must provide the general contractor with the notice of non-payment.

Preliminary notice in Louisiana is very specific to the project participant and their role. General contractors, design professionals, subcontractors, material suppliers, and equipment rental companies will all have different notice requirements in many situations.

Most states have some sort of preliminary notice requirement in order for parties to retain the right to file a mechanics lien or make a bond claim. Louisiana is no exception, though it does have a wider variety of notice types than most states. Louisiana’s notice requirements are defined in LRS 38:2242.

Louisiana’s preliminary notice rules significantly changed on January 1, 2020: Learn more about Louisiana’s preliminary notice changes.

Among the biggest changes:

  • Notice of Contract is not required for projects less than $100,000 (up from $25,000)
  • Equipment lessors have more time to send Notice of Lease (30 days – up from 10 days)
  • Design professionals now have their own specific notice requirements
  • Contractors can force an owner to file a Notice of Termination
  • Final Notice of Non-Payment can be used to extend some residential lien deadlines

While notice is not required of some project participants, it is always a good idea to provide preliminary notice anyway.

Types of Preliminary Notice in Louisiana

There are a lot of different notices in Louisiana, so let’s break them down notice-by-notice.

Notice of Lien Rights: Prior to the commencement of the work.

Notice of Non-Payment (Monthly Notice): Within 75 days of the last day of the month in which the material was delivered.

Notice of Lease: Within 30 days from first furnishing the equipment to the project.

Design Professional Notice: Must send to owner within 30 days of being hired.

Final Notice of Non-Payment: Must be sent at least 10 days prior to filing a lien (effectively, at least 10 days before the lien deadline.

Required notices

Notice of Contract

Prime Contractors must file a Notice of Contract on all projects exceeding $100,000. The Notice of Contract must be filed with the recorder of mortgages in the parish in which the project is located prior to the commencement of the work. View contact information for all Louisiana parish recorder offices.

Download a free Notice of Contract form.

Notice of Lien Rights

Prime contractors on owner-occupied residential projects (not including new construction) must deliver a Notice of Lien Rights to the property owner before commencing work. This document is often included in the contract.

Download a free Notice of Lien Rights form.

Notice of Lease

Equipment lessors must deliver notice to the property owner and prime contractor within 30 days from the date of first delivering the equipment to the project to preserve lien rights. Senders no longer need to send to their direct customers, however.

Download a free Notice of Lease form: For Private Projects | For State Projects.

Design Professional Notice

This is a preliminary notice for “professional consultants and subconsultants” (i.e. design professionals). It must be sent by design professionals hired by someone other than the property owner.

Notice of Non-Payment (Monthly Notice)

Material suppliers who provide materials to a subcontractor (or party below – like a sub-subcontractor) must send a Notice of Non-Payment to the property owner and general contractor within 75 days of the last day of each month during which material was delivered. Learn more about Louisiana’s monthly notice requirement for suppliers.

Download a free Notice of Non-Payment form.

Voluntary Notices

Notice to Owner of Obligations 

Any party may provide this voluntary notice to the property owner to request notification of the filing of a Notice of Termination, abandonment, or substantial completion. With that information, project participants can ensure they don’t miss a deadline.

Final Notice of Non-Payment

This is a voluntary notice for residential projects where no Notice of Contract was filed. It can be sent by all suppliers and equipment rental companies (regardless of who hired them), as well as all other parties hired by someone other than the owner.

If the Final Notice of Non-Payment is sent at least 10 days before the lien deadline, the deadline will change a bit. The deadline to file a lien will change to 70 days after a Notice of Termination, or 70 days after substantial completion if a Notice of Termination wasn’t filed.

Request for Notice of Termination

General contractors in Louisiana can now force a property owner to file a Notice of Termination by sending a Request for Termination. An owner must file the Notice of Termination within 10 days of such a request.

Preliminary Notice Frequently Asked Questions

It's important to have an understanding of the rules and requirements associated with preliminary notices if you are doing work in Louisiana. While Louisiana is generally a "non-notice" state, there are still requirements for the notices that do exist. And, if the rules and requirements are not complied with, there can be serious consequences. Deadlines can change depending on your role on the project, and there can even be a requirement to send preliminary notices more than once.

If you're receiving prelims, it's important to know what you're looking at and know what to do in followup. Since preliminary notices are subject to a lot of complex rules and requirements, this can all be difficult. These are some frequently asked questions about the Louisiana preliminary notice process, with answers by construction attorneys and payment experts in Louisiana.

Prelim FAQs on Private Projects

Do I Need to Send a Louisiana Preliminary Notice?

General contractors, material suppliers, and design professionals have some preliminary notice requirements in Louisiana, though each has different form rules and deadlines. Note that Louisiana’s preliminary notice requirements changed on January 1, 2020.

The Notice of Intent to Lien/ Final Notice of Nonpayment rules can be found here: Louisiana Notice of Intent FAQs & Guide.

When do I Need to Send a Louisiana Preliminary Notice?

The deadline to serve or file a preliminary notice depends on the role and project type.

  • Notice of Contract: Prior to the commencement of the work.
  • Notice of Lien Rights: Prior to the commencement of the work.
  • Notice of Non-Payment (Monthly Notice): Within 75 days of the last day of the month in which the material was delivered.
  • Notice of Lease: Within 30 days from first furnishing the equipment to the project.
  • Design Professional Notice: Must send to owner within 30 days of being hired.
  • Final Notice of Non-Payment: Must be sent at least 10 days prior to filing a lien (effectively, at least 10 days before the lien deadline.

What if I Send the Louisiana Preliminary Notice Late?

When required to give notice in Louisiana, failure to do so within the correct time period is usually fatal to the lien claim. A discussion of what happens if a material supplier fails to send notice on time can be found here, and a similar look at the consequences for an equipment lessor’s failure to provide notice can be found here.

Failure to timely file a notice to owner requesting notification of filing of a notice of termination will merely result in not receiving notice of termination/abandonment/substantial completion.

Note, though, that if a Notice of Lease is sent late on a job starting after January 1, 2020 – late notice will still be effective to preserve lien rights for amounts that become due after the notice is sent.

How should the Louisiana Preliminary Notice be sent?

If agreed upon by you and your customer (and whoever else must receive notice), notices may be sent electronically. Otherwise:

  • The Notice of Contract must be filed in the office of the recorder of mortgages for the parish in which the project is located.
  • The Notice of Lien Rights is generally included in the original signed contract with the owner, so that it does not need to be personally served on the owner.
  • The Notice of Non-Payment should be served by certified mail, return receipt requested.
  • The Equipment lessor’s notice should be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested.
  • A Notice of Lease, a Design Professional’s Notice, and a Final Notice of Non-Payment should all be sent by registered or certified mail.

 

Do I need to deliver notice to the property owner, or someone else?

The people who need to receive a preliminary notice in Louisiana will change depending on your role and the type of notice:

  • The Notice of Contract must be filed in the office of the recorder of mortgages for the parish in which the project is located.
  • A Notice of Lien Rights is only given to the owner.
  • Material supplier’s notice should be given to the property owner and the prime contractor.
  • Equipment lessors should provide notice to the property owner and the prime contractor.
  • A Design Professional’s Notice must be sent to the owner.

Is the Louisiana Preliminary Notice Requirement met when sent or delivered?

If mailed via certified or registered mail with the USPS, a notice will be considered delivered when mailed. If it is sent via commercial carrier or via first class mail, it will be considered delivered when mailed – but only if it is actually received by the intended recipient.

If agreed upon, mail delivered electronically is considered delivered when sent to the appropriate email address or electronic information processing system.

Prelim FAQs on Public Projects

Do I need to Send a Louisiana Preliminary Notice on a public project?

Generally in Louisiana, preliminary notice is not required in order to make a bond claim. However, an exception exists for equipment lessors in all cases, and for material suppliers to subcontractors if the contract has been recorded. Other claimants may give notice, but are not required to. Further information can be found in this expert examination of the preliminary notice requirements associated with making a bond claim in Louisiana.

When do I need to send a Louisiana Preliminary Notice on a public project?

Equipment Lessors: No more than 10 days after the movables are first placed at the site for use in work.

Additionally, a material supplier to a subcontractor must send a notice of non-payment to the general contractor within 75 days from the last day of the month in which the material was delivered. Although it was previously presumed that this notice requirement was only triggered after the “last” delivery of materials, a recent First Circuit appeals decision states that the notice must be sent for every month that unpaid materials are furnished.

If I Send a Louisiana Preliminary Notice Late, can I still make a bond claim?

When required, failure to send preliminary notice timely is fatal to a bond claim in Louisiana.

How should the Louisiana Preliminary Notice be sent on a public project?

Louisiana statutes require that the preliminary notice be “delivered” to the public entity and/or general contractor (depending on notice). This may be accomplished by personal delivery, or registered or certified mail.

To Whom Must the Preliminary Notice be Given on a Louisiana public works project?

Equipment lessors must provide the public entity with a copy of the lease. Material suppliers to subcontractors must provide the general contractor with the notice of non-payment.

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Louisiana Preliminary Notice Forms Templates

The Louisiana preliminary notice form has certain information that must be included, and specific requirements that must be met. This doesn’t mean that the form has to look a certain way, but it does mean that there are requirements that govern the content of the notice, and other rules related to whether the notice will be sufficient and effective. The forms provided here for free by Levelset are compliant with the Louisiana rules. You can download them for free, or use our system to send or request them easily.

Louisiana Notice of Lease – Private Projects Form - free from

Louisiana Notice of Lease – Private Projects Form

Those leasing equipment to a construction project in Louisiana must deliver a “Notice of Lease” within 10 days of first furnishing to protect their mechanics...

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Louisiana Notice of Lease – State Projects Form - free from

Louisiana Notice of Lease – State Projects Form

Those leasing equipment to a construction project in Louisiana must deliver a “Notice of Lease” within 10 days of first furnishing to protect their mechanics...

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Louisiana Notice of Non-Payment Form - free from

Louisiana Notice of Non-Payment Form

In Louisiana, material suppliers on state projects must deliver a notice of non-payment to the prime contractor and public entity prior to filing a mechanics...

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Louisiana Notice to Owner of Obligation Form - free from

Louisiana Notice to Owner of Obligation Form

In Louisiana, parties who did not contract with the owner may, but need not, deliver a notice to the owner notifying them of their role...

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Louisiana Notice of Lien Rights Form - free from

Louisiana Notice of Lien Rights Form

Contractors must provide property owners with a “Notice of Lien Rights” if (1) Renovation or repair work is being performed on a single family residence...

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Louisiana Notice of Contract Form - free from

Louisiana Notice of Contract Form

In Louisiana, anyone who contracts with the owner for more than $100k ($25k if project started before Jan. 1, 2020) must file a Notice of...

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