Gaining Leverage with a Mechanic’s Lien
You may have heard the term “mechanic’s lien” used before. The definition of the term is “a security interest in the title to property for the benefit of those who have supplied labor or materials that improve the property”. While mechanic’s lien is the most common term used, it is also referred to as a property lien, construction lien, materialman’s lien, or supplier’s lien among others.
The mechanics lien can be used to enforce payment rights on both real property (English common law refers to land and any associated structures on a property that are owned by a person) as well as personal property (property that is considered moveable unlike real property or real estate). In the United States, the instrument can trace its modern roots back to Thomas Jefferson and the establishment of Washington D.C. as the new capital.
Why use a Mechanic’s Lien?
The purpose of a mechanic’s lien is to ensure those who are employed in the improvement of a property the ability to have legal security of their debt should the property owner neglect to pay them for their services or materials. If the property owner does not compensate the worker for the the provided service or materials, the worker can initiate a court proceeding to force a property sale for the repayment of the debt.
Who is a Mechanic’s Lien for?
Despite the word mechanic in the legal description of this instrument, it is not limited to the automotive professionals. The word “mechanic” is in this case is applicable to the following professions as well:
- Construction Professionals
- General Contractors
- Materials Suppliers
What can I include in the amount?
The specific regulations for costs included in a lien vary from state to state, but generally a contractor can only include labor, materials, and services costs in their lien that have improved the value of real property.
For example, if a roofer is not paid for a job they completed on a property, they would be able to include the value of the roof tiles they installed, any equipments rental costs, and hourly costs for labor to complete the job. Important costs that would not be applicable include attorney’s fees, punitive damages, emotional distress, or other damages because they did not have a direct benefit to the value of the property. This is why GreenLight Maximum Recovery guarantees no out-of-pocket costs and nothing owed until your debt is resolved, we don’t believe you should gamble money to recover debts you’re owed for a job done correctly.
Learn your local law and consult professionals for mechanics liens.
As mentioned above, although the laws tend to try to enforce the same general code of ethics, there can be significant variance in legislative specifics for mechanic’s liens from state to state. Not only that, but each individual county within a state may have a particular set of practices that differ greatly from the counties nearby. In order to have your lien accepted it must follow these practices and be formatted properly.
In addition to varying laws and practices, contractors must abide by certain deadlines to be able to claim a lien on a property. Due to these considerations, we encourage contractors to contact a GreenLight Maximum Recovery professional to put you on the right path to secured debt and maximized recoveries.