In an industry plagued with payment issues such as slow pay, short pay, and no pay, preliminary notices are the first step toward protecting your right to payment.
Unfortunately, there are strict rules and requirements when preparing prelims that differ from state to state. Because of the different guidelines, contractors, subcontractors, and material suppliers can sometimes make prelim mistakes that render them invalid.
Other times, information regarding the project may not be readily available, which prompts the question, can you send an incomplete or inaccurate preliminary notice?
The simple answer is no. You should not send an incomplete or inaccurate prelim, and we will detail why below.
The Dangers of Missing or Inaccurate Pre Lien Information
Prelims can be powerful tools for protecting your right to payment. They are a prerequisite to filing a mechanics lien, so sending an invalid prelim can result in you losing your lien rights.
That means that an incomplete or inaccurate preliminary notice will create a chain reaction that will prevent you from filing a valid mechanics lien for payment owed to you—if your payment issues come to that.
An invalid preliminary notice will also notify your general contractor that you have no concrete lien rights.
If payment issues begin to arise in the project, it could affect your chances of being paid on time since the general contractor will know that you do not have legal leverage to halt the project.
What Happens If a Service Sends an Inaccurate Prelim on Your Behalf?
Prelim services can be incredibly helpful when preparing preliminary notices.
They save you time and resources by researching critical information on their end, and they can help ensure accurate and timely sends.
However, not all pre lien services are created equal.
Many service providers utilize automated systems that send out incomplete prelims when they can’t find the necessary information or if their client doesn’t approve said information in a given time frame.
While it’s logical to think that sending an incomplete prelim is better than no prelim, it can actually cause more harm than good—given the reasons stated above.
When seeking assistance with your preliminary notices, remember to pay close attention to the process and customer service provided.
Reliable Preliminary Notice Services
At CNS, we prepare our customers’ prelims with the highest level of attention and care to help protect their right to payment.
Our preliminary notice services include a research and verification process where our team contacts the appropriate entities to gather critical information regarding your construction project.
We also assign you a dedicated customer representative to understand the ins and outs of your business, learn how you like to move through the process, and keep you informed of any pertinent information or actions that you need to take.
Unlike other services, your CNS customer representative will contact you directly if our researchers find any issues or conflicts with your pre lien information.
We NEVER send out incomplete preliminary notices or leave important messages in automated inboxes where they could be missed. As an extension of your business, we will always keep you informed.
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.