Filing a construction lien


As an owner of a contracting business, you should learn how to properly file a construction lien.


Attorney Tom Olsen: Robert you're on news 96:5 go ahead.

Robert: Good morning. I'm a landscape contractor and I've been in business almost 20 years now. Some of the jobs that we do you get your final payment or you try to get your final payment and there's a discrepancy here and there. Sometimes you're wrong and we have to compensate customers because things aren't done 100% to their satisfaction as much as we try. Then there's other times that you know that you've done everything that you should have done and everything up to what the customer expected and then you still think of those last few hundred dollars.

Sometimes being as it's only a few hundred dollars it's not worth getting an attorney, but what's the best route to try to get that last little bit. Is it filing a lien on the property? What what's a good route to take?

Attorney Tom Olsen: Well first of all Robert because you've made improvements to somebody's house you do have a right to put a construction lien on there. Robert if I were you I would spend some time learning how to properly file and record a construction lien. Part of that process is certainly giving a copy of that construction lien to the property owner. That's the good news. For just a little bit of time and money you can file a construction lien and hopefully that would scare the property owner into paying you in full.

The bad news is that when you file a construction lien all that does is that it gives you one year in which to file a lawsuit to collect the balance of your money, after one year that construction lien goes away all by itself. All you would be doing would be creating a cloud on their title for the one year. It would stop certainly stop them from selling or refinancing but I think learning how to do a proper construction lien would be a part of the something that should be on your to-do list and start doing all for that purpose Robert.

Robert: Okay. All right. Well sounds good I appreciate the help

Attorney Tom Olsen: All right Robert good luck to you. Bye bye.