Construction projects, even small ones, involve a complex sea of personnel. Everyone wants to get paid and the person who hired you may not be the person funding the project. As a matter of fact, there may be several layers between you and the project’s funding source.
A mechanic’s lien, a legal maneuver that a Tallahassee construction lawyer can help you enforce, is an effective tool if you aren’t getting paid. However, there is a preemptive measure that can make enforcing a mechanic’s lien unnecessary.
The preliminary notice is a document that contractors and subcontractors can submit to site owners informing them of their right to enforce a lien on the property if they don’t receive payment within a certain timeframe. This precautionary maneuver has several benefits that we will explore in this two-part series. In part two of this series, not only will we continue to explore the benefits of preliminary notices, we will provide tips for what needs to be included in the notice.
Preliminary Notices May Be Required by Law
In many states, including Florida, contractors, subcontractors and material suppliers are required to send a preliminary notice to a site owner, if they are not directly contracted by them. If they do not submit the preliminary notice, they could be jeopardizing their right to enforce a mechanic’s lien.
Preliminary Notices Make Contractors Visible to Site Owners
If you weren’t directly hired by a site owner, there’s a chance that they may not know who you are or that you are working with them. It’s not to say that a payment wouldn’t trickle down to you, but a preliminary notice can clear the path. By sending a preliminary notice, you make the site owner aware that you are on the project and your role.
Preliminary Notices Makes Your Invoice a Priority
In a similar vein, submitting a preliminary notice brings visibility to your invoice in a powerful way. Site owners do not want to receive a mechanic’s lien notice from anybody, especially a contractor that they didn’t know was a part of the project. By sending a preliminary notice, you are stating that you expect to be paid in a timely manner as well as establishing your presence on the project. To ensure that you won’t enforce a mechanic’s lien, your invoice becomes a priority.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.