FAQ: Are We Required To Deliver A Notice Of Intent To Lien Before Filing Our Lien?

Mechanics Lien Laws Can Confuse

Short Answer:  Only in the following states:  Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Louisiana, Missouri, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Wyoming.

Long Answer:  It’s extremely common for folks to not quite understand the differences between preliminary notices and notices of intent to lien; and further, to not quite understand when a state requires notices of intent to be sent.

Generally speaking, the states that require a “Notice of Intent to Lien” are in the minority. We wrote a blog post listing out the states that require notices and when these notices must be filed.  While every state is a little different, the “Notice of Intent to Lien” states typically require the lien claimant to notify the property owner 10-30 days before moving forward to file the lien.

However, the majority of states do not have any such requirement, and those unpaid on a construction project can proceed to file their lien without ever sending a “notice of intent” or warning anyone immediately before filing.  You can check out a summary of the 50-State Mechanic Lien Laws at zlien.com/Lien-Law/ to get details about the requirements in your state.  Also, if you want to order a mechanics lien or notice of intent, you can do so on the LienWizard.

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  • http://www.levycraig.com Rob Pitkin

    Missouri actually has (separate) pre-lien Notice requirements for both general contractors and subcontractors. Subcontractors must simply provide a written Notice to the owner at least 10 days before filing a mechanic’s lien. An “original contractor” (defined as one having a direct contract with the owner), on the other hand, must provide a separate Notice (actually in the form of a “warning statement”) to the owner early in the project – either at the time of contracting, its first day of work, or delivered with the first invoice/pay application. Many contractors don’t discover that they have failed to comply with this requirement until it’s too late.

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