Nebraska Preliminary Notice Guide and FAQs

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Nebraska Preliminary Notice FAQs

About Nebraska Preliminary 20-Day Notices

Nebraska Preliminary Notice Rules
At a Glance


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Preliminary notice not required in WV
Preliminary Notices Are Not Required

Preliminary notice is not required in the state of Nebraska. However, if the property owner is considered a “protected party” a preliminary notice may be given in an attempt to be fully protected and secure the ability to file a "full-price" lien.


X
Notice Not Required from GCs

Preliminary notice is not required in the state of Nebraska. However, if the property owner is considered a “protected party” a preliminary notice may be given in an attempt to be fully protected and secure the ability to file a "full-price" lien.


X
Notice Not Required from Subs

Preliminary notice is not required in the state of Nebraska. However, if the property owner is considered a “protected party” a preliminary notice may be given in an attempt to be fully protected and secure the ability to file a "full-price" lien.


X
Notice Not required from Subs

Preliminary notice is not required in the state of Nebraska. However, if the property owner is considered a “protected party” a preliminary notice may be given in an attempt to be fully protected and secure the ability to file a "full-price" lien.

Preliminary notice not required in WV
Preliminary Notice Not Required

Preliminary notice is not required for any party on a Nebraska public project to retain the ability to make a claim against a payment bond. It is generally good practice, however, to send a preliminary notice even when not specifically required.


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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.


X
Notice Not Required from Subs

Preliminary notice is not required for any party on a Nebraska public project to retain the ability to make a claim against a payment bond. It is generally good practice, however, to send a preliminary notice even when not specifically required.


X
Notice Not Required from Suppliers

Preliminary notice is not required for any party on a Nebraska public project to retain the ability to make a claim against a payment bond. It is generally good practice, however, to send a preliminary notice even when not specifically required.

Nebraska law is a little bit confusing with respect to preliminary notice. Generally, Nebraska does not require any sort of preliminary notice to be given in order for a construction participant to retain future lien rights. However, as with all other states and all construction projects, it is always a best practice to provide preliminary notice even when not specifically required, in order to promote project visibility, open channels for communication and collaboration, and streamline payment.

Nebraska, in the past, made no distinction between residential and commercial property or property owners with respect to the availability and application of mechanics lien rights and protections. However, that was modified through the concept of a “protected party.” Currently in Nebraska, “[b]uyers and owners of residential real estate, who are likely to be unsophisticated about construction liens, are given special protection” under the mechanics lien statutes. These protected parties are afforded additional protection in that liens agains their property may be limited to the lesser of “(a) [t]he amount unpaid under the claimant’s contract; or (b) [t]he amount unpaid under the prime contract through which the claimant claims at the time the contracting owner receives the claimant’s notice of lien liability.

According to Neb. Rev. Stat. § 52-129(1)(a), in order to qualify as a protected party to whom a preliminary notice of lien liability may be given, a party must be a party who:

(1) who contracts “to give a real estate interest security interest in, or to buy or to have improved, residential real estate all or part of which he or she occupies or intends to occupy as a residence;”

(2) who is obligated on a contract to “buy or have improved residential real estate or on an obligation secured” by such property, if related to an individual “who occupies or intends to occupy all or part of the real estate as a residence”; or

(3) “Who acquires residential real estate and assumes or takes subject to the obligation of a prior protected party …. ”

For the purposes of identifying a protected party, residential property must have no more than 4 dwelling units (or be  condominium) and must have no non-residential uses for which the protected party is a lessor.

It is important to note, however, that while a best practice in order to potentially secure a larger pool of protection for a subsequent lien, the preliminary notice of lien rights to a protected party is not required in order to later claim a lien. Nebraska law specifically states that a contraction participant “may give notice of the right to assert a lien” but this notice is not specifically required in order to claim lien, it only effects the amounts for which later lien may be validly claimed.

Preliminary Notice Frequently Asked Questions

If you're sending preliminary notices in Nebraska, it's important to get all the details right. While preliminary notices are not specifically required on Nebraska projects, there are certain circumstances in which sending a notice can provide a benefit. It's important to know what these cases are, so you can be protected. If you're receiving prelims, it's important to know what you're looking at and know what to do in followup. Since prelims are subject to a lot of complex rules and requirements, this can all be difficult. These are some frequently asked questions about the Nebraska preliminary notice process.

Prelim FAQs on Private Projects

Do I Need to Send a Nebraska Preliminary Notice?

No. Preliminary notice is not specifically required to be sent by any party on any project in Nebraska.

However, that being said, it can provide a benefit to send a preliminary notice of lien rights when a the property owner is a “protected party.” A protected party is an owner of residential property with less than 4 units, an owner of vacant land intended to be improved and used as a residence, or an owner of a condominium unit.

If a preliminary notice is sent to a protected party a project participant can be more fully protected if a lien filing is required.

When do I Need to Send a Nebraska Preliminary Notice?

Notice is not required, so there is no set time limit. If a party chooses to send a preliminary notice of lien rights to a protected party owner, the notice may be served at any time after entering into a contract and prior to filing the mechanics lien. The earlier it is sent the better, however, since a lien against a the property of a ported party is “for the lesser of:

(a) The amount unpaid under the claimant’s contract; or

(b) The amount unpaid under the prime contract through which the claimant claims at the time the contracting owner receives the claimant’s notice of the right to assert a lien.

What if I Send the Nebraska Preliminary Notice Late?

There is no set time limit for sending the notice, so it cannot be late as long as it is given prior to filing the mechanics lien. And, as it is not required, there is generally no consequence to not sending the notice.

However, the later it is sent, the less protection it may be able to afford.

How Should the Nebraska Preliminary Notice be Sent?

The preliminary notice must be “given” to the property owner. Sending by certified mail, return receipt requested, will provide evidence of delivery.

Do I Have to Send the Nebraska Preliminary Notice to Someone Other than the Owner?

No. The preliminary notice only needs to be sent to the property owner.

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

In Nebraska, the notice is considered delivered when sent – if sent by certified mail, return receipt requested.

Public Jobs

Do I Need to Send a Nebraska Preliminary Notice?

No. Preliminary notice is not required in Nebraska in order to preserve a right to make a bond claim. Any party, however, may send preliminary notices if desired in order to promote visibility, open channels for communication, and streamline payment.

When do I Need to Send a Nebraska Preliminary Notice?

N/A

What if I Send the Nebraska Preliminary Notice Late?

N/A

How Should the Nebraska Preliminary Notice be Sent?

N/A

To Whom Must the Nebraska Preliminary Notice be Given?

N/A

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How to file a lien in Nebraska

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Nebraska Preliminary Notice Form Template

Just because the Nebraska preliminary notice is not specifically required doesn’t mean it doesn’t have rules and required information. The Nebraska preliminary notice form is regulated by statute and must contain certain information. And, if sending a preliminary notice to promote visibility, you want a form that is not confrontational and designed to provide helpful information to all parties. The forms provided here for free by Levelset are compliant with the Nebraska rules, and drafted to promote visibility and collaboration on projects. You can download them for free, or use our system to send or request them easily.

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