Resolving Payment Issues in Construction Projects
At the southern California law firm of Rippetoe Law, P.C., our lawyers represent property owners, contractors and subcontractors to resolve their payment issues, including enforcement of their mechanic's lien and stop payment matters. We also assist public entities, such as cities, counties or joint powers authorities in responding to stop notice claims. Our attorneys have been handling construction law matters for many years and have successfully resolved a wide range of issues related to all types of these matters.
Advising Clients About Their Options
Mechanics' liens and stop notices are legal remedies for non-payment. Typically, a subcontractor is not paid for completed work by the general contractor and files a mechanics' lien against the property for payment. If the project is a public works project, the subcontractor cannot place a lien on the property. However, it is possible to file a stop notice that requires the public entity to hold the funds to pay the subcontractors. Our law firm advises clients about their options in lien and stop notice matters.
Who Can File a Mechanics' Lien?
In California the right to place and enforce a lien is a right arising from the state constitution. This right extends to licensed mechanics, materialmen, artisans and laborers who provide labor or materials in a construction project; however, whatever is provided must be actually utilized in the project. The statutory rights to enforce such liens are strictly construed and often require the knowledge of an experienced construction law attorney.
Generally after recording a mechanics' lien, the trade person has 90 days to initiate a lawsuit to enforce the lien. Our firm has represented both plaintiffs (usually the subcontractors or material suppliers) and defendants (usually the property owners) in mechanics' lien enforcement. As a result of our broad experience, we are able to provide solid advice and aggressive representation for clients on either side of a mechanics' lien lawsuit.
Removing a Lien
When a subcontractor or materials supplier fails to file a lawsuit to enforce a mechanics' lien, the lien still remains on the property and oftentimes may affect the property's title. Our law firm is experienced in getting liens removed from the property in these instances.
Contact our Irvine, California, law firm at 949-852-0020 to discuss any matter related to a mechanics' lien or stop notice.