Tennessee Preliminary Notice FAQs

Last updated September 11, 2020
Sending a Tennessee preliminary notice is an effective way to speed up payment on a construction project. A preliminary notice is an informational document typically sent to the property owner near the beginning of a construction project. Here's what you need to know about the rules and requirements for sending preliminary notice in Tennessee.

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Tennessee preliminary notice requirements for:

Private projects

Direct contractors must send notice on owner-occupied residential projects in Tennessee.

  • Due before job starts
  • Must be sent to the owner
  • Cannot be sent late

Direct contractors - those who have a contract with the property owner - must send a Notice to Owner prior to commencing work or executing the contract on a residential project of 1-4 units, where the owner resides on-site. A contractor who fails to send a required notice in Tennessee will lose their lien rights. Additional "notice" language must also be in the contract itself.

Send Your Notice

Public projects

Direct contractors are not required to send notice on public construction jobs in Tennessee.

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.

Private projects

Subcontractors and suppliers must send notice in Tennessee.

  • Due within 90 days of the month of last furnishing
  • Must be sent to the owner and GC
  • Cannot be sent late

Sub-tier parties must send a Notice of Non-Payment to the property owner and the GC within 90 days of last day of the month labor and materials were provided. For example, if a subcontractor finished work on April 3, they must provide a Notice of Non-Payment within 90 days from April 30 (the last day of the month). Separate notices are required for each month unpaid services or materials are provided.

Send Your Notice

Public projects

None required.

On public construction projects, Tennessee does not require preliminary notice to be delivered by any project participant in order to retain the right to make a claim against the payment bond. However, sending preliminary notice even when not required is generally beneficial to promote visibility, open channels for communication, and streamline payment.