Material suppliers and laborers play a huge role in property construction. Often, these laborers complete their work on time and do not get paid. What can a labor or material provider do to collect? Construction attorneys often start by drafting a demand letter. Sometimes it is coupled with a lien. Generally speaking, property owners do not like liens on their real property. We often see situations where the lien is paid out of the sale proceeds at a real estate sale closing.
Mechanic’s lien, also called a contractor’s lien, is an official document that attaches a lien to a property for unpaid work. If filed correctly, the lien becomes visible on public record. This shows potential buyers that there is an amount of debt owed for resources provided to the property.
According to Texas laws, the affidavit must include:
(a) The affidavit must be signed by the person claiming the lien or by another person on the claimant’s behalf and must contain substantially:
(1) a sworn statement of the amount of the claim;
(2) the name and last known address of the owner or reputed owner;
(3) a general statement of the kind of work done and materials furnished by the claimant and, for a claimant other than an original contractor, a statement of each month in which the work was done and materials furnished for which payment is requested;
(4) the name and last known address of the person by whom the claimant was employed or to whom the claimant furnished the materials or labor;
(5) the name and last known address of the original contractor;
(6) a description, legally sufficient for identification, of the property sought to be charged with the lien;
(7) the claimant’s name, mailing address, and, if different, physical address; and
(8) for a claimant other than an original contractor, a statement identifying the date each notice of the claim was sent to the owner and the method by which the notice was sent.
(b) The claimant may attach to the affidavit a copy of any applicable written agreement or contract and a copy of each notice sent to the owner.
(c) The affidavit is not required to set forth individual items of work done or material furnished or specially fabricated. The affidavit may use any abbreviations or symbols customary in the trade.
Filing a lien can prompt payment from the owner, as most lenders are not willing to finance a property that has a mechanic’s lien filed against it.
If you feel that you may have cause to file a lien or any questions regarding liens or payment for construction work, please contact us for an experienced construction lawyer. You may speak with a board-certified attorney at: 713-572-4900.