Common Mistakes When Filing a Mechanic’s Lien

In order to successfully complete a construction project, it takes an entire team and many moving parts. Unfortunately, all these moving parts can sometimes cause confusion and lead to payment complications.

Mechanics liens are powerful tools for contractors, subcontractors, and others to resolve many of these payment issues. But a mechanics lien is only effective if properly filled out and filed in accordance with each state’s mechanics lien laws.

At CNS, we have almost 4 decades of experience helping people like you file mechanics liens and other construction notices. If you need assistance filing a mechanics lien, send us a message or call us at 800-366-5660.

Continue reading to learn about common mistakes that result in the rejection of mechanics liens.


Mechanics Lien Law Mistakes To Look Out For

Since rules and regulations for mechanics liens are very specific and vary from state to state, the filing process can often be complex. Read our article, “State-to-State Differences in Mechanics Liens,” to learn more about the varying mechanics liens laws.

Attempting to navigate the mechanics lien process on your own can lead to costly errors. Even the smallest mistakes can result in your lien being rejected and further complicating your ability to collect due payment.

Failing To Send a Pre Lien

A pre lien, prelim, or preliminary notice, is a document that informs the responsible parties — the property owner, general contractor, and construction lender — that you have the right to file a mechanics lien if they fail to pay you for your work.

Preliminary notices are sent at the start of a project, and many states require them. If you fail to send a prelim in a state that requires them, you could lose your mechanics lien rights altogether.

Contact CNS today to get your prelims started and ensure your mechanics lien rights are protected.

Missing or Inaccurate Information

Mechanics liens have very strict requirements for how they should be filled out and formatted. Everything from minor typos and incorrect descriptions to incorrect page margins and misplaced information can cause your mechanics lien to be rejected.

To make matters worse, each state has its own requirements, and they can even differ between counties. CNS serves all counties in CA, AZ, WA, OR, NV, and AZ to ensure an error-free mechanics lien filing process.

Filing The Lien Too Late

Every state has a strict deadline by when you can file a mechanics lien. Failing to meet the deadline will result in you losing your lien rights. Unfortunately, these deadlines can vary and often cause confusion, so you must know exactly when the deadline is for the state in which you provided services.

Aside from knowing how long you have to file a mechanic’s lien, you also need to know how the deadline is calculated. Some states’ deadlines are counted from the last day you provided material or labor to a project. Others, such as California mechanics lien law, calculate it from the day the entire project is completed.

Allowing the Lien to Expire

Mechanics liens are not evergreen. That means that after a certain amount of time, depending on the state, your mechanics lien can no longer be enforced.

Even if you completed every step of the filing process correctly, if you wait longer than the specified time to foreclose the claim, your claim will no longer be valid and you will be unable to collect payment through it.


Filing A Mechanic’s Lien With CNS

There are many challenges that one can run into when attempting to file a mechanics liens on their own. And unfortunately, these challenges can be the difference between receiving your due payment and not.

At CNS, we want to protect your right to collect everything owed to you.

Our services not only help avoid common errors, but they also ensure a professional-looking delivery. Even if all the information is correct, mechanics liens can sometimes be placed at lower priorities if they do not appear professionally prepared. CNS can help ensure that your liens and notices receive the immediate attention they deserve.

For any legal counsel, CNS can also refer you to our wide network of attorneys that specialize in construction law.

Contact us today to file a mechanics lien or send out a prelim ⇢

Prefer to call? You can reach us at 800-366-5660.


Disclaimer: CNS is not an attorney, and if you need legal advice, please contact one.