A mechanic’s lien is a legal instrument that encumbers the property of individuals who hire contractors to improve the value of their land and then fail to pay.
- Placing a lien on property that you had been hired to improve, but were never paid for your work
- Encouraging property owners to pay you money due on a contract you fulfilled that improved their land.
If a mechanic or contractor performs work that improves the value of your land, he or she can place a “mechanic's lien” on your property if you do not pay up. A mechanic’s lien can be a serious liability for you and your property, and contractor’s often don’t hesitate to use this powerful tool if they feel they have been stiffed.
Each state has its own rules regarding when, how, and under what circumstances a contractor can encumber a piece of real estate with a mechanic's liens, but this remedy is available for laborers, material suppliers, architects, land surveyors, and engineers who believe they were stiffed for their work.
To receive a mechanic's lien, a contractor or supplier must first complete the work or furnish the ordered materials. If the property owner doesn’t pay, the contract may then file a notice of lien in the public records. The lien typically must be filed within 60-120 from completion of the work or supply of the materials, and it must include specific information regarding the claim the contractor has against the property owner. This customizable form will help you create a mechanic’s lien that fits the requirements for your area, although you should be aware of the rules in your jurisdiction.
A mechanic's lien can be a serious concern for affected property owners, and a lien goes that unaddressed may result in a foreclosure and forced sale of the property. If you are considering placing a mechanic’s lien on property you’ve worked on, use this interactive form to create a lien that is clear, accurate, and effective.