Sending a Vermont 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 Vermont.
If you're sending preliminary notices in Vermont, it's important to understand the the lay of the land in order to get the most benefit possible from sending your notice. These are some frequently asked questions (and answers) about the notice process in Vermont.
Generally no. Vermont does not require any preliminary notice to preserve the ability to make a bond claim. However, since the language of the bond itself controls for all non-highway public projects it is advisable to obtain a copy of the bond to determine if any preliminary notice is required.
Notices of Commencement aren't really a thing in Wisconsin - the Wisconsin mechanics lien statute doesn't provide for a Notice of Commencement filing. With that being said, there are some other elements of Wisconsin's mechanics lien laws that might be helpful for an owner to know going into their project.
What an owner should expect on a Wisconsin construction project
There are a number of different topics that an owner should be at least a little familiar with when heading into a project on their property. Of course, even if you are wholly unfamiliar with the topics below, it's possible to pull of a construction project without a hitch. But, since you asked, here are some topics that come to mind. Obviously, this isn't an exhaustive list - but understanding these topics will help to avoid common problems that arise on construction projects.
One of the easiest issues to pop up on a construction job is to use informal or sloppy change order processes. Requiring that all change orders be in writing and signed will help make sure that you're aware of all changes on the project, and it will avoid disputes over whether extras were approved and what should be paid for those extras.
First, know that mechanics lien rights will be available to just about everyone who works on the project - the GC, their subcontractors, suppliers, etc. But, those parties will only be able to file lien claims against your property if they aren't paid for their work. So, instituting a strict lien waiver collection policy can help you make sure everyone gets paid and no liens are filed on the project. Generally, it's a good idea to think of lien waivers as a receipt for payment - any time someone gets paid, they should provide that receipt (waiver). More waiver discussion here: (1) How To Handle Requesting & Tracking Lien Waivers; and (2) The Property Owner’s Guide to Lien Waivers. If a lien does get filed for some reason, this guide will help: A Mechanics Lien Was Filed on My Property – What Do I Do Now?
Get ready to receive preliminary notices
Additionally, it will be helpful to understand the notices you'll be receiving throughout the project. First, the GC will need to provide you with a specific lien notice directly in the contract or shortly after they begin work. Further, the subcontractors and suppliers on your job will also be sending preliminary notices letting you know they're working on the project and that, if worse comes to worst, they'll be able to file a mechanics lien. But, these notices are all simply informational and are intended to build a healthy, transparent, and collaborative project. Plus, if there is an issue later on, you'll have everyone's contact info to help nip that in the bud. You can learn all about those notices here: (1) Why Preliminary Notices Are Great For Property Owners & GCs; and (2) Wisconsin Preliminary Notice Guide and FAQs.
If a Notice of Intent to Lien is received, resolve the dispute
There is a more troubling notice Wisconsin claimants may send, though. If the GC, subcontractor, supplier, etc. isn't getting paid what they're owed, they may send a Notice of Intent to Lien. Essentially, this document is a lien warning - it provides the owner and other recipients notice that there's a payment issue, and it gives those recipients a chance to solve the issue before a lien gets filed. A Notice of Intent to Lien must be sent at least 30 days before a lien can be filed - so, that provides about a month to negotiate and settle payment claims before having to deal with a lien. You can learn more on WI's Notice of Intent rules here: Wisconsin Notice of Intent FAQs & Guide. And, if you do receive one of these notices, this guide will help: I Just Received a Notice of Intent to Lien – What Should I Do Now?
In Wisconsin is a Preliminary Notice required on a commercial project?
In Wisconsin, for a subcontractor to secure their mechanics lien rights a preliminary notice (known as a Subcontractor Identification Notice Form) should be sent within 60 days of first furnishing labor or materials to the project. This notice can still be sent after the 60 day period, but it will only cover labor and materials provided after the owner received the notice.
It’s rare that a state has no preliminary notice requirements for any party on any project, but that’s the case in Vermont.
While there may be no specific requirements to provide a preliminary notice in Vermont, that doesn’t mean that providing some the of notice is a bad idea. In fact, providing preliminary notice, even when not required, is usually the smart thing to do. Providing a voluntary preliminary notice document, provided it’s drafted and formulated correctly, can be beneficial by promoting project visibility, providing helpful information, opening channels for communication, and streamlining payment.
The above are just some of the many reasons to provide voluntary preliminary notices, or as we like to call them at Levelset, “visibility documents” but, in fact, there are many more reasons, as well.
Preliminary notices are not required in Vermont. However, sending one anyways increases your visibility on construction projects and could help you get paid faster. The generic preliminary notice form can be used in Utah and any other state where notices aren’t required. It provides the GC, owner, and other paying parties with information about your company.
Fill out the form
Be careful! Accuracy is important.
It’s important that you get this part right. Since GCs and owners often use the Utah preliminary notice to communicate with you, providing incorrect information on the form could cause payment problems down the line.
Send your preliminary notice
Since no preliminary notice is required in Utah, there are no specific rules for delivery. Send your preliminary notice however you see fit.
How to send a Preliminary Notice with Levelset
Select Preliminary Notice document.
Provide basic job information.
Levelset sends the document for you. Postage included!