West Virginia Private Lien Resources

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West Virginia Mechanics Lien Frequently Asked Questions

It’s easy to file a West Virgina mechanics lien with zlien, the nation’s leading mechanics lien compliance manager and filing service. zlien prepares West Virginia mechanics liens, notices of intent to lien, preliminary notices, lien releases and cancellations, and more. To learn more about West Virginia’s mechanics lien laws, read the frequently asked questions below.

West Virginia Preliminary
Prime Contractor
None.
Sub/Laborer
Optional.
Supplier/Other
Optional.
West VIrginia Mechanics Lien
Prime Contractor
Lien must be filed w/in 100 days from completion of contract, and enforced within 6 months from lien’s filing.
Sub/Laborer
Lien must be filed w/in 100 days from completion of contract, and enforced within 6 months from lien’s filing.
Supplier/Other
Lien must be filed w/in 100 days from completion of contract, and enforced within 6 months from lien’s filing.

West Virginia Mechanics Lien FAQ

Who Can File a West Virginia Mechanics Lien?

In West Virginia, contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers of labor and/or materials to property owners, contractors, or subcontractors, on a project to build, erect, construct, alter, remove, repair or improve a building, structure or improvement is entitled to a mechanics lien.

Architects, surveyors, engineers, and landscape architects are also entitled to mechanic’s lien protection in West Virginia.

Note, however, that only parties within the first 3 tiers of the project are entitled to lien rights in West Virginia.

File A West Virginia Mechanics Lien Now

When is the Deadline to File a West Virginia Mechanics Lien?

In West Virginia, a potential lien claimant must file a mechanics lien within 100 days from the date of the claimant’s last delivery or completion of claimant’s contract. If the due date falls on a holiday the notice is due on the day prior to the due date. The lien must also be received by the owner within the same 100 day time frame.

Learn More About West Virginia’s Mechanics Lien Deadlines

Do I Need to Send Notice the Lien Was Recorded?

All claimants who do not contract directly with the owner of the property must give a notice to the property owner, or the owner’s agent. All claimants may provide notice that the lien was recorded, and it may be best practice to do so to facilitate payment. The notice is required to be served on the property owner within the same 100 day period in which the lien is required to be filed – there is no requirements as to whether the lien should be recorded first, or whether the notice of the lien should be sent first. Note that the notice provided to the owner is different than the recorded lien.

When zlien files your mechanics lien, everything is handled

Can I include Attorney’s Fees, Collection Costs, or Other Amounts in the Lien Total?

No. West Virginia does not generally allow attorney’s fees, lost profits, or other indirect or consequential damages to be included in the lien amount. West Virginia also does not provide for the award of attorney’s fees to the prevailing party in a lien foreclosure lawsuit.

More Information About Recovering Attorney Fees and Lien Costs

When is the Deadline to Enforce a West Virginia Mechanics Lien, or, How Long is My Lien Effective?

In West Virginia, an action to enforce a mechanics lien must be initiated within 6 months from filing the lien.

West Virginia Mechanics Lien Foreclosure Information

Will My West Virginia Lien Have Priority Over Pre-Existing Mortgages or Construction Loans?

In West Virginia, a mechanics lien is governed by the “first-in-time, first-in-right” rule, but relates back to the date of first furnishing of labor and/or material to the project. It is superior to an encumbrance recorded after labor and/or materials were first furnished to the project, and subordinate to encumbrances recorded after that date.

As to competing mechanics lien claims, liens of laborers, artisans, mechanics, workmen, and materialmen have first priority, and a lien of a subcontractor takes priority over the lien of a general contractor.

Articles about West Virginia Mechanics Lien Priority

Must the Lien Include a Legal Property Description?

No. In West Virginia, a mechanics lien requires a “a description of the building or other structure or improvement appurtenant thereto, into which the materials and labor went, and for which the claim of lien is made, together with a description of the property upon which such improvements are located.” It is sufficient if the property is described with such that it may be readily identified.

Legal Property Descriptions in West Virginia Mechanics Liens

Must the West Virginia Lien be Notarized?

Yes. A mechanics lien in West Virginia must be notarized to be valid.

Don’t Make A Common West Virginia Mechanics Lien Mistake

Can I File a West Virginia Lien if I’m Unlicensed?

Yes. West Virginia does not impose any additional mandatory licensing requirements in order to claim a mechanic’s lien. However, it is never recommended to perform work for which a license is required without having that license.

The Perils of Not Being Licensed When Filing A West Virginia Mechanics Lien

Can I File a West Virginia Lien on a Condominium Project?

Yes. A mechanics lien may be filed against a condominium project in West Virginia, to the extent you are a party otherwise allowed to file a mechanics lien.

Information on West Virginia Mechanics Lien Claims on Condominiums

Who Cancels the West Virginia Lien if/when I get Paid?

When a lien is satisfied, the lien claimant is required to execute and record a lien release. If the lien claimant refuses, the court may order the lien release.

Learn More About West Virginia Mechanics Liens

What Are the Lien Waiver Rules?

West Virginia does not have statutory lien waiver forms, and therefore, you can use any lien waiver forms. Since lien waivers are unregulated, be careful when reviewing and signing lien waivers. See this article: Should You Sign That Lien Waiver?.

West Virginia state law is unclear or silent about whether contractors and suppliers can waive their lien rights before any work on the project begins. Accordingly, you want to proceed with caution on this subject. You can learn more about such “no lien clauses” at this article: Where Can You Waive Your Lien Rights Before Payment?

Learn More About Lien Waivers

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West Virginia Preliminary Notice FAQs

Do I Need to Send a West Virginia Preliminary Notice?

Preliminary Notice is not required by West Virginia lien law, however, any party may provide the property owner with preliminary notice. If given, the lien claimant is not required to give the owner account and notice within 60 days after the last delivery (this refers to the old lien law).

Send A West Virginia Preliminary Notice

When do I Need to Send a West Virginia Preliminary Notice?

If sent, the preliminary notice should be provided prior to the furnishing of labor and/or materials.

West Virginia Preliminary Notice Articles

What if I Send the West Virginia Preliminary Notice Late?

This is an optional notice, so there is no consequence for sending the notice late.

West Virginia Articles on Preliminary Notice and Mechanics Lien Laws

How Should the West Virginia Preliminary Notice be Sent?

There is no specific provision as to how this notice must be sent, but certified mail is sufficient.

Why You Need To Be Careful When Sending West Virginia Preliminary Notices by USPS

Do I Have to Send the West Virginia Preliminary Notice to Someone Other than the Owner?

No.

Common Mistakes When Sending West Virginia Preliminary Notices

Is the West Virginia Preliminary Notice Requirement met when sent or delivered?

Notices sent by certified or registered mail are considered delivered when sent.

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