FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONSGeneral Pre-lien Notice Lien Affidavit Bond Claim Lien Release Notary and Filing
A Mechanic’s Lien Affidavit is a document used by contractors, suppliers, and any person that is not getting paid for the labor, services or materials delivered to a construction project. A mechanic’s lien, protects claimants by asserting rights against the actual real property (real estate) for the unpaid work or services performed on that specific property. Depending on where you are located, a Mechanic’s Lien Affidavit can also be referred as “Project Lien”, “Construction Lien” and even “Contractors Lien”.
Any person or company who provides labor, materials, equipment and supplies to a project and has not received payment for the work performed is entitled to file a lien on a property.Note: Landscapers, Landscape materials suppliers and those who furnishes labor or materials for, the demolition of a structure on real property, must have a written contract to file a lien.
To prepare a lien affidavit, you will need the general information of the project and your contract. Below is a list of most of the information that is most needed to file a lien.• Project Information: Owner, name of project, common address (or legal property description), county where the project is located.• For Subcontractors: Name (or company name) and mailing address of the General (Prime) Contractor.• For Sub-subcontractors: It is not required but preferred to have the name and mailing address of all Subcontractors involved in the contract chain.• Work: Invoice dates, description of the unpaid work performed and the amount owed per each individual month.
The legal description is a record of the real property (piece of land) that contains information that clearly identifies it such as property dimensions and boundaries. This description can be written in a few different forms and will typically appear on sales contracts and the property deed.If it is not printed in the contract or blueprints, it can be found in the “Property Search” section of each individual county.Instructions on how to find the legal description of a property
The county appraisal district websites are free and can provide you with the project owner’s name, mailing address, and legal description of the property. Make sure to search the real property records and not the business/personal property records.To locate a county appraisal district website search online by typing (county name) Texas tax appraisal district website. For example: “Harris County, Texas, tax appraisal district website” or “Harris CAD.” Then select their “Property Search” link and enter owner’s name and/or street address to search for property information. Make sure you have identified the correct legal name of the owner of the property, it could also be a company name. Finding property information in the tax appraisal websites is sometimes difficult and although having the legal description in the lien documents is preferred, if you know the actual street address of the project, you may use that instead and your lien will still be valid.
The deadline to file a mechanic’s lien will depend on the role you have in the project.Below are the three corresponding charts with the required documents and deadlines to send or file lien documents for general (original) contractors, subcontractors and sub-subcontractors working on commercial projects.IMPORTANT, IF THE 15th OF THE MONTH FALLS ON A WEEKEND OR A HOLIDAY, THE LAST DAY TO FILE A LIEN WILL ALWAYS MOVE TO THE EARLIEST BUSINESS DAY.
Texas Property Code Chapter 53 states that only those who are filing a lien as landscapers, landscape materials supplier, demolition service providers and professional designers must have a written contract with the owner or the owner’s agent. However, it does not provide an exemption for them to file as contractors or any other subcontractor or supplier.
Only contractors who have a direct agreement with the project owner can file a lien on a property without sending notice first.
Yes. If you think about it, you could get paid the balance of one month but not others. Then you would be required to release the lien for the amount that was paid but would have lost your rights for the other months.It is always better to secure your rights in all forms possible by using the tools created to protect you.
We do not recommend filing a copy of your invoices in the Property Records with your Lien Affidavit. However you must retain copies of them as you may require them in the future.