Deadline Dynamics: Your Guide to Florida's Crucial Lien Law Timelines

This comprehensive guide highlights the critical deadlines under Florida Lien Laws and provides practical tips for compliance, helping construction professionals safeguard their interests and avoid common pitfalls.

ARIELA WAGNER

by

Ariela Wagner

|

WORKER SMILING

Attorney Reviewed

Last updated:

Jul

15

,

2024

Published:

June 28, 2024

4min

Read

Florida's lien laws provide vital protection for contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, and other construction-related professionals by ensuring they have a legal mechanism to secure payment for their services and materials. However, understanding these laws requires a thorough understanding of various deadlines and procedural requirements to enforce a mechanic's lien successfully

In this blog, we will look at notable deadlines under Florida's lien laws, offering a comprehensive guide to ensure compliance and protect your right to payment.

Overview of Mechanic's Liens

Mechanic's liens are legal claims against a property for unpaid construction work or materials. In Florida, these liens are governed by Chapter 713 of the Florida Statutes. The primary purpose of a mechanic's lien is to provide security to those who supply labor, services, or materials to a construction project, ensuring they have a means to collect what is owed to them.

Key Definitions

Before exploring the deadlines, it's crucial to understand some key terms defined under Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Lienor: Any person who has a right to a lien under the statute.
  • Owner: The person who holds the legal title to the property.
  • Contractor: The person or company contracted directly with the property owner to perform construction work.
  • Subcontractor: A person or company hired by the contractor to perform part of the work.
  • Notice of Commencement (NOC): A document filed by the property owner before starting work, which outlines the details of the project and the property.

Preliminary Notice: Notice to Owner

Preliminary Notice Deadline: Must Be Received by the 45th Day from Furnishing Labor and/or Material to the Project

For subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, and material suppliers who do not have a direct contract with the property owner, Florida law requires serving a Notice to Owner (NTO). This notice informs the owner of their involvement in the project and their right to lien the property if not paid. The Notice to Owner must be served within 45 days of first providing labor, services, or materials to the project.

Failure to provide a timely Notice to Owner forfeits the right to file a mechanic's lien. This notice is critical for preserving lien rights and ensures the property owner is aware of all parties contributing to the project.

Ensure your lien rights are secured. Send your Notice to Owner in just 60 seconds! - Send Now

Notice of Commencement (NOC)

Notice of Commencement (NOC) Deadline: Before Starting Work or Delivery of Materials

The property owner must file a Notice of Commencement (NOC) with the local county recorder's office before starting any work or delivery of materials. This notice includes essential details such as the legal description of the property, the name and address of the property owner, and the contractor's name and address.

The NOC is crucial because it triggers the timeline for other notices and protects the owner's property from hidden liens by making the project's commencement public record. It must be posted on the job site in a visible location.

Claim of Lien

Claim of Lien Deadline: Within 90 Days of Last Furnishing Labor or Materials

A Claim of Lien is the formal document filed to assert a mechanic's lien on the property. This claim must be recorded in the county where the property is located within 90 days of the last day the lienor provided labor, services, or materials.

The Claim of Lien should include:

  • The lienor's name and address
  • The owner's name
  • A description of the labor, services, or materials furnished
  • The amount due
  • A description of the property

Once recorded, the lienor must serve a copy of the Claim of Lien on the property owner within 15 days. This step is vital for enforcing lien rights and ensuring the lien is valid.

Secure Your Payment Today – File Your Lien Instantly with One Click! - File Now

Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit

Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit Deadline: At Least 5 Days Before Foreclosure Action or Completion of Contract

Contractors must provide the property owner with a Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit before initiating a foreclosure action or within 5 days of completing their contract. This affidavit details the amount due to the contractor and any unpaid bills for labor, services, or materials. The Final Payment Affidavit serves as a final notice to the property owner of any outstanding payments and is a prerequisite for filing a lawsuit to enforce the lien.

Notice of Contest of Lien

Notice of Contest of Lien Deadline: Any time After Lien is Filed

Property owners can shorten the timeframe for a lienor to enforce a lien by filing a Notice of Contest of Lien. This notice compels the lienor to initiate a foreclosure action within 60 days. If the lienor fails to file suit within this period, the lien is extinguished.

The Notice of Contest of Lien is a strategic tool for property owners to expedite the resolution of lien claims and remove clouded title from their property.

Action to Enforce Lien (Foreclosure)

Action to Enforce Lien (Foreclosure) Deadline: Within 1 Year of Recording the Claim of Lien

To enforce a mechanic's lien, the lienor must file a lawsuit (foreclosure action) within one year from the date the Claim of Lien is recorded. This action seeks to sell the property to satisfy the unpaid debt.

This one-year period can be shortened if the property owner files a Notice of Contest of Lien, as mentioned earlier. It's crucial for lienors to track these deadlines carefully to ensure their right to payment is not forfeited.

Summary of Key Deadlines Under Florida Mechanic's Liens Laws

Key Deadlines Under Florida Mechanic's Liens Laws - To include all the points below

To summarize, here are the critical deadlines under Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Notice to Owner: Must be received by the 45th day from furnishing labor and/or material to the Project.
  • Notice of Commencement: Before starting work or delivery of materials.
  • Claim of Lien: Within 90 days of last furnishing labor or materials.
  • Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit: At least 5 days before foreclosure action or completion of contract.
  • Notice of Contest of Lien: Any time after lien is filed (shortens enforcement period to 60 days).
  • Action to Enforce Lien: Within 1 year of recording the Claim of Lien (can be shortened by Notice of Contest of Lien).

Practical Tips for Compliance

Practical Tips for Compliance

Florida's mechanic's lien laws require diligent attention to deadlines and procedural details. Here are some practical tips to ensure compliance and protect your lien rights:

  1. Maintain Detailed Records: Keep meticulous records of all work performed, materials supplied, and communications with the property owner and other contractors.
  1. Use Calendar Reminders: Set up calendar reminders for all critical deadlines to ensure timely filing and service of required notices.
  1. Seek Legal Advice: Consult with an attorney specializing in construction law to navigate complex situations and ensure all legal requirements are met.
  1. Educate Your Team: Ensure that all team members involved in project management and billing are aware of the lien law requirements and deadlines.
  1. Communicate Clearly: Maintain clear and open communication with the property owner and other parties involved in the project to avoid disputes and misunderstandings.

Common Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Common Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Despite the best efforts to comply with Florida's mechanic's lien laws, certain common pitfalls can jeopardize lien rights. Understanding these pitfalls and how to avoid them is crucial:

  1. Late Notices: Missing the deadline for serving the Notice to Owner or recording the Claim of Lien is a critical error that can result in the forfeiture of lien rights. To avoid this, prioritize these notices and track deadlines carefully.
  1. Incorrect Information: Providing inaccurate or incomplete information in notices or the Claim of Lien can render them invalid. Double-check all details before filing to ensure accuracy.
  1. Failure to Serve Notices: Serving required notices on the property owner is as important as filing them. Ensure that notices are properly served within the specified timeframe.
  1. Ignoring Preliminary Steps: Failing to file a Notice of Commencement or not receiving a copy of it from the property owner can complicate lien rights. Always ensure the Notice of Commencement is filed and posted as required.
  1. Not Following Up: Once a Claim of Lien is filed, timely follow-up is essential. If payment is not received, take prompt action to enforce the lien within the statutory period.

Key Takeaway

Understanding and adhering to the deadlines under Florida's mechanic's lien laws is essential for contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers seeking to protect their right to payment. By following the outlined procedures and staying vigilant about key deadlines, lienors can navigate the complexities of the lien process and secure the compensation they deserve for their work and materials.

For further information and assistance, consider the following resources:

  • Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR): Offers guidance and resources related to construction and mechanic's liens.
  • Florida Construction Lien Law (Chapter 713, Florida Statutes): The full text of the law governing mechanic's liens in Florida.
  • Local County Recorder's Office: For filing notices and claims related to mechanic's liens.

If you find yourself facing issues, don't hesitate to reach out for guidance and support. SunRay can provide valuable assistance and expertise to help you navigate the complexities of construction payment disputes in Florida. Call 800-403-7660 today and get paid what you deserve!

Common Questions Contractors Ask

What Happens if I Miss the Deadline to Serve a Notice to Owner or File a Claim of Lien?

Missing the deadline to serve a Notice to Owner or file a Claim of Lien can result in the forfeiture of your lien rights. This means you may lose the legal ability to secure payment through a mechanic's lien. It is crucial to adhere to these deadlines to protect your right to payment.

Can a Property Owner Challenge or Remove a Mechanic's Lien?

Yes, a property owner can challenge or remove a mechanic's lien by filing a Notice of Contest of Lien. This notice shortens the lien enforcement period to 60 days. If the lienor does not initiate a foreclosure action within this period, the lien is extinguished. Property owners can also dispute the lien in court if they believe it is invalid or exaggerated.

How Can I Ensure Compliance with Florida's Mechanic's Lien Laws?

To ensure compliance with Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Maintain Detailed Records: Keep thorough documentation of all work performed, materials supplied, and communications.
  • Set Calendar Reminders: Use reminders for all critical deadlines.
  • Consult with a Construction Attorney: Legal advice can help navigate complex situations and ensure all requirements are met.
  • Educate Your Team: Ensure everyone involved in project management and billing understands the lien law requirements.
  • Communicate Clearly: Maintain open communication with property owners and other parties involved in the project to avoid disputes.

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What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

About Author

ARIELA WAGNER

Ariela Wagner

Ariela is the president and founder of SunRay Construction Solutions. She has over 18 years of construction industry experience. Read More>

WORKER SMILING

File a Mechanics Lien in Florida in just 60 Seconds!

File Now

Florida's lien laws provide vital protection for contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, and other construction-related professionals by ensuring they have a legal mechanism to secure payment for their services and materials. However, understanding these laws requires a thorough understanding of various deadlines and procedural requirements to enforce a mechanic's lien successfully

In this blog, we will look at notable deadlines under Florida's lien laws, offering a comprehensive guide to ensure compliance and protect your right to payment.

Overview of Mechanic's Liens

Mechanic's liens are legal claims against a property for unpaid construction work or materials. In Florida, these liens are governed by Chapter 713 of the Florida Statutes. The primary purpose of a mechanic's lien is to provide security to those who supply labor, services, or materials to a construction project, ensuring they have a means to collect what is owed to them.

Key Definitions

Before exploring the deadlines, it's crucial to understand some key terms defined under Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Lienor: Any person who has a right to a lien under the statute.
  • Owner: The person who holds the legal title to the property.
  • Contractor: The person or company contracted directly with the property owner to perform construction work.
  • Subcontractor: A person or company hired by the contractor to perform part of the work.
  • Notice of Commencement (NOC): A document filed by the property owner before starting work, which outlines the details of the project and the property.

Preliminary Notice: Notice to Owner

Preliminary Notice Deadline: Must Be Received by the 45th Day from Furnishing Labor and/or Material to the Project

For subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, and material suppliers who do not have a direct contract with the property owner, Florida law requires serving a Notice to Owner (NTO). This notice informs the owner of their involvement in the project and their right to lien the property if not paid. The Notice to Owner must be served within 45 days of first providing labor, services, or materials to the project.

Failure to provide a timely Notice to Owner forfeits the right to file a mechanic's lien. This notice is critical for preserving lien rights and ensures the property owner is aware of all parties contributing to the project.

Ensure your lien rights are secured. Send your Notice to Owner in just 60 seconds! - Send Now

Notice of Commencement (NOC)

Notice of Commencement (NOC) Deadline: Before Starting Work or Delivery of Materials

The property owner must file a Notice of Commencement (NOC) with the local county recorder's office before starting any work or delivery of materials. This notice includes essential details such as the legal description of the property, the name and address of the property owner, and the contractor's name and address.

The NOC is crucial because it triggers the timeline for other notices and protects the owner's property from hidden liens by making the project's commencement public record. It must be posted on the job site in a visible location.

Claim of Lien

Claim of Lien Deadline: Within 90 Days of Last Furnishing Labor or Materials

A Claim of Lien is the formal document filed to assert a mechanic's lien on the property. This claim must be recorded in the county where the property is located within 90 days of the last day the lienor provided labor, services, or materials.

The Claim of Lien should include:

  • The lienor's name and address
  • The owner's name
  • A description of the labor, services, or materials furnished
  • The amount due
  • A description of the property

Once recorded, the lienor must serve a copy of the Claim of Lien on the property owner within 15 days. This step is vital for enforcing lien rights and ensuring the lien is valid.

Secure Your Payment Today – File Your Lien Instantly with One Click! - File Now

Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit

Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit Deadline: At Least 5 Days Before Foreclosure Action or Completion of Contract

Contractors must provide the property owner with a Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit before initiating a foreclosure action or within 5 days of completing their contract. This affidavit details the amount due to the contractor and any unpaid bills for labor, services, or materials. The Final Payment Affidavit serves as a final notice to the property owner of any outstanding payments and is a prerequisite for filing a lawsuit to enforce the lien.

Notice of Contest of Lien

Notice of Contest of Lien Deadline: Any time After Lien is Filed

Property owners can shorten the timeframe for a lienor to enforce a lien by filing a Notice of Contest of Lien. This notice compels the lienor to initiate a foreclosure action within 60 days. If the lienor fails to file suit within this period, the lien is extinguished.

The Notice of Contest of Lien is a strategic tool for property owners to expedite the resolution of lien claims and remove clouded title from their property.

Action to Enforce Lien (Foreclosure)

Action to Enforce Lien (Foreclosure) Deadline: Within 1 Year of Recording the Claim of Lien

To enforce a mechanic's lien, the lienor must file a lawsuit (foreclosure action) within one year from the date the Claim of Lien is recorded. This action seeks to sell the property to satisfy the unpaid debt.

This one-year period can be shortened if the property owner files a Notice of Contest of Lien, as mentioned earlier. It's crucial for lienors to track these deadlines carefully to ensure their right to payment is not forfeited.

Summary of Key Deadlines Under Florida Mechanic's Liens Laws

Key Deadlines Under Florida Mechanic's Liens Laws - To include all the points below

To summarize, here are the critical deadlines under Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Notice to Owner: Must be received by the 45th day from furnishing labor and/or material to the Project.
  • Notice of Commencement: Before starting work or delivery of materials.
  • Claim of Lien: Within 90 days of last furnishing labor or materials.
  • Contractor's Final Payment Affidavit: At least 5 days before foreclosure action or completion of contract.
  • Notice of Contest of Lien: Any time after lien is filed (shortens enforcement period to 60 days).
  • Action to Enforce Lien: Within 1 year of recording the Claim of Lien (can be shortened by Notice of Contest of Lien).

Practical Tips for Compliance

Practical Tips for Compliance

Florida's mechanic's lien laws require diligent attention to deadlines and procedural details. Here are some practical tips to ensure compliance and protect your lien rights:

  1. Maintain Detailed Records: Keep meticulous records of all work performed, materials supplied, and communications with the property owner and other contractors.
  1. Use Calendar Reminders: Set up calendar reminders for all critical deadlines to ensure timely filing and service of required notices.
  1. Seek Legal Advice: Consult with an attorney specializing in construction law to navigate complex situations and ensure all legal requirements are met.
  1. Educate Your Team: Ensure that all team members involved in project management and billing are aware of the lien law requirements and deadlines.
  1. Communicate Clearly: Maintain clear and open communication with the property owner and other parties involved in the project to avoid disputes and misunderstandings.

Common Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Common Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Despite the best efforts to comply with Florida's mechanic's lien laws, certain common pitfalls can jeopardize lien rights. Understanding these pitfalls and how to avoid them is crucial:

  1. Late Notices: Missing the deadline for serving the Notice to Owner or recording the Claim of Lien is a critical error that can result in the forfeiture of lien rights. To avoid this, prioritize these notices and track deadlines carefully.
  1. Incorrect Information: Providing inaccurate or incomplete information in notices or the Claim of Lien can render them invalid. Double-check all details before filing to ensure accuracy.
  1. Failure to Serve Notices: Serving required notices on the property owner is as important as filing them. Ensure that notices are properly served within the specified timeframe.
  1. Ignoring Preliminary Steps: Failing to file a Notice of Commencement or not receiving a copy of it from the property owner can complicate lien rights. Always ensure the Notice of Commencement is filed and posted as required.
  1. Not Following Up: Once a Claim of Lien is filed, timely follow-up is essential. If payment is not received, take prompt action to enforce the lien within the statutory period.

Key Takeaway

Understanding and adhering to the deadlines under Florida's mechanic's lien laws is essential for contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers seeking to protect their right to payment. By following the outlined procedures and staying vigilant about key deadlines, lienors can navigate the complexities of the lien process and secure the compensation they deserve for their work and materials.

For further information and assistance, consider the following resources:

  • Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR): Offers guidance and resources related to construction and mechanic's liens.
  • Florida Construction Lien Law (Chapter 713, Florida Statutes): The full text of the law governing mechanic's liens in Florida.
  • Local County Recorder's Office: For filing notices and claims related to mechanic's liens.

If you find yourself facing issues, don't hesitate to reach out for guidance and support. SunRay can provide valuable assistance and expertise to help you navigate the complexities of construction payment disputes in Florida. Call 800-403-7660 today and get paid what you deserve!

Common Questions Contractors Ask

What Happens if I Miss the Deadline to Serve a Notice to Owner or File a Claim of Lien?

Missing the deadline to serve a Notice to Owner or file a Claim of Lien can result in the forfeiture of your lien rights. This means you may lose the legal ability to secure payment through a mechanic's lien. It is crucial to adhere to these deadlines to protect your right to payment.

Can a Property Owner Challenge or Remove a Mechanic's Lien?

Yes, a property owner can challenge or remove a mechanic's lien by filing a Notice of Contest of Lien. This notice shortens the lien enforcement period to 60 days. If the lienor does not initiate a foreclosure action within this period, the lien is extinguished. Property owners can also dispute the lien in court if they believe it is invalid or exaggerated.

How Can I Ensure Compliance with Florida's Mechanic's Lien Laws?

To ensure compliance with Florida's mechanic's lien laws:

  • Maintain Detailed Records: Keep thorough documentation of all work performed, materials supplied, and communications.
  • Set Calendar Reminders: Use reminders for all critical deadlines.
  • Consult with a Construction Attorney: Legal advice can help navigate complex situations and ensure all requirements are met.
  • Educate Your Team: Ensure everyone involved in project management and billing understands the lien law requirements.
  • Communicate Clearly: Maintain open communication with property owners and other parties involved in the project to avoid disputes.
Disclaimer
THE INFORMATION ON THIS WEBPAGE IS NOT THE SAME AS LEGAL ADVICE. SUNRAY CONSTRUCTION SOLUTIONS, LLC IS NOT AN ATTORNEY OR A LAW FIRM. WE RECOMMEND THAT YOU CONSULT WITH AN ATTORNEY.
Ariela Wagner
Ariela Wagner
Ariela is the president and founder of SunRay Construction Solutions. She has over 18 years of construction industry experience.
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