Even the most successful contractors have payment issues. In fact, the more projects you are working on the greater the likelihood you will run into some payment disputes with an owner. This is where mechanics liens come into play. When you need to protect your right to be compensated, the mechanics lien can be your best friend.
Although the mechanics lien can be a powerful tool, it needs to be wielded effectively. This is where a Charlotte construction attorney can help. Contractors that elect to take the “do it yourself” approach may suffer the consequences. Failing to consult an experienced legal professional to file a lien on your behalf can result in setbacks and an invalid claim. In this three-part article, the attorneys of Cotney Construction Law will discuss a few critical mistakes contractors can make when they attempt to file their own mechanics lien. To ensure your mechanics lien is filed correctly, consult a Charlotte construction lawyer.
You Don’t Have a Right to File a Claim
After you put in your hard work, you should be compensated by the owner. Unfortunately, if you did not agree to a direct contract with the owner, depending on your role on a project, there can be some guesswork related to your mechanic lien rights and whether or not you can file a claim. Although in North Carolina the first-, second-, and third-tier subcontractors can file a claim of lien for funds owed by their hiring party (like the general contractor for a subcontractor), lien rights and requirements get more and more complicated the further down the priority list you are.
How a Construction Lawyer Can Help
An experienced construction lawyer can review the circumstances of your payment dispute and choose the best available legal option for you. Here are a few things to consider that can help you validate your lien rights:
- Always Have a Contract: The best way to avoid a payment dispute is to hire a Charlotte construction lawyer to draft a contract for you before you perform any work.
- Send a Preliminary Notice: North Carolina requires most parties to send a preliminary notice within 15 days of furnishing labor on a project, so it’s important to do so promptly to ensure compliance.
- Obtain Licensing: Although North Carolina has no specific laws related to licensing and filing a mechanics lien, it’s best to be licensed in any state you are performing work in for a variety of reasons.
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.