Understanding the Essentials of Claim of Lien in Construction Projects

Learn how to navigate the intricate world of Claim of Lien, from recording deadlines to what constitutes 'last work,' ensuring your construction project stays on solid legal ground.

ARIELA WAGNER

by

Ariela Wagner

Last updated:

Sep 15, 2023

Published:

Sep 15, 2023

WORKER SMILING

Attorney Reviewed

4 Mins

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When it comes to construction projects, understanding the legal aspects is crucial to protect your rights and ensure you get paid for your hard work. One essential document in this regard is the Claim of Lien.

In this blog post, we'll dive into the key aspects of Claim of Lien and shed light on some important details you need to know.

What is a Claim of Lien?

A Claim of Lien is a legal document recorded in the public record. It serves as a vital piece of the puzzle in construction projects, as it outlines essential information, including your identity, the property owner's details, your client's information, the dates of your initial and final work, and it ultimately clouds the property title. Moreover, it can serve as the basis for foreclosure or property sale if necessary.

To make it official, a Claim of Lien must be signed, notarized, and recorded in the county where the project is located.

What should be included in a Claim of Lien?

Claim of lien serves as a safety net, but it's essential to include specific information to make it valid and enforceable. Here are the details to be included -  

1. Parties' Information:

Your Claim of Lien should start with the basics. It must include:

  • Your name and address.
  • The property owner's name and address.
  • The hiring party's name and address (the entity that contracted you).

These details are vital for identifying the parties involved in the construction project.

2. Property Description:

To ensure the property can be accurately identified, your Claim of Lien must provide a clear and concise description of the property in question. This description should be comprehensive enough to prevent any ambiguity.

file a construction lien

3. Work and Materials:

Specify the work or materials you provided for the project. This helps clarify your role and contribution to the construction work. Include:

  • Detailed descriptions of the work performed, or materials supplied.
  • The dates when these items were first furnished and when they were last furnished.

This information establishes the scope and timeline of your involvement in the project.

4. Payment Details:

Clearly outline the financial aspects of your claim:

  • The total amount due for your services or materials.
  • The remaining unpaid balance.
  • The total contract amount between you and the hiring party.

These financial details provide a transparent overview of your payment expectations.

5. Preliminary Notice Date:

Include the date when you provided the property owner, contractor, and/or subcontractor with preliminary notice. Preliminary notice serves as a formal notification of your intent to file a construction lien if you're not compensated for your work or materials.

6. Statutory Warning:

Your Claim of Lien must feature a specific statutory warning, the language of which can be found in Florida statutes. This warning is a legal requirement and adds an extra layer of legitimacy to your lien.

7. Signature:

Lastly, your Claim of Lien should bear your signature. Your signature confirms the accuracy and authenticity of the document.

Filing a construction lien in Florida can indeed be a complex process. The state's laws and regulations must be followed meticulously to ensure your lien's validity and enforceability. Given the intricacies involved, many individuals pursuing a construction lien opt to collaborate with legal professionals who can provide guidance and ensure all requirements are met.

Who Needs to Record a Claim of Lien on Private Projects?

If you have a direct contract with the property owner, you are responsible for recording the Claim of Lien. In such cases, there's no need to send a Notice to Owner since you have a direct agreement with the property owner. However, for subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, suppliers, and suppliers to sub-subcontractors, recording a Claim of Lien is essential to secure their right to payment in the project.

Claim of Lien on Public Projects

It's important to note that on public projects, the concept of lien rights doesn't apply; instead, it involves bond claims. While some individuals may still record Claims of Lien on public projects, these documents are essentially meaningless in a legal context. The clerks receiving these liens don't scrutinize them for accuracy; they merely check if they are signed and notarized.

When Must a Claim of Lien be Recorded?

Timing is crucial when it comes to recording a Claim of Lien. You must record your claim within 90 days from the date of your last work on the project. This 90-day period starts counting from the day after your final workday. If the 90th day falls on a weekend or a legal holiday when the clerk's office is closed, the deadline extends to the next business day. This means you could have up to 93 days to record your Claim of Lien.

What is Not Considered "Last Work"?

It's important to understand what doesn't count as "last work." Activities like punch list work, warranty work, and passing inspections are not considered last work on their own. Your last workday is the day you last physically performed tasks on the project. However, base contract work and approved change order work do constitute last work and can reset your lien rights if necessary.

Don't Wait Until the Last Minute

Waiting until the last minute to send your notice or record your Claim of Lien can be risky. The process of preparing and recording the lien takes time, especially in populous counties. Even electronic recording can take up to five days. It's essential to start the lien recording process around Day 60 from your last work on the project to ensure you're not rushing at the last moment, risking potential issues with your claim.

Key Takeaway

In conclusion, understanding the ins and outs of Claim of Lien is crucial for anyone involved in construction projects. By adhering to the timelines and requirements, you can protect your rights and secure the compensation you rightfully deserve for your hard work. Don't leave it to chance; ensure your financial interests are safeguarded through a well-executed Claim of Lien.

Ready to streamline your legal and compliance needs? Discover the efficiency, accuracy, and convenience of SunRay. Click here to explore our services and transform your business!

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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 13 years of construction industry experience. Read More>

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When it comes to construction projects, understanding the legal aspects is crucial to protect your rights and ensure you get paid for your hard work. One essential document in this regard is the Claim of Lien.

In this blog post, we'll dive into the key aspects of Claim of Lien and shed light on some important details you need to know.

What is a Claim of Lien?

A Claim of Lien is a legal document recorded in the public record. It serves as a vital piece of the puzzle in construction projects, as it outlines essential information, including your identity, the property owner's details, your client's information, the dates of your initial and final work, and it ultimately clouds the property title. Moreover, it can serve as the basis for foreclosure or property sale if necessary.

To make it official, a Claim of Lien must be signed, notarized, and recorded in the county where the project is located.

What should be included in a Claim of Lien?

Claim of lien serves as a safety net, but it's essential to include specific information to make it valid and enforceable. Here are the details to be included -  

1. Parties' Information:

Your Claim of Lien should start with the basics. It must include:

  • Your name and address.
  • The property owner's name and address.
  • The hiring party's name and address (the entity that contracted you).

These details are vital for identifying the parties involved in the construction project.

2. Property Description:

To ensure the property can be accurately identified, your Claim of Lien must provide a clear and concise description of the property in question. This description should be comprehensive enough to prevent any ambiguity.

file a construction lien

3. Work and Materials:

Specify the work or materials you provided for the project. This helps clarify your role and contribution to the construction work. Include:

  • Detailed descriptions of the work performed, or materials supplied.
  • The dates when these items were first furnished and when they were last furnished.

This information establishes the scope and timeline of your involvement in the project.

4. Payment Details:

Clearly outline the financial aspects of your claim:

  • The total amount due for your services or materials.
  • The remaining unpaid balance.
  • The total contract amount between you and the hiring party.

These financial details provide a transparent overview of your payment expectations.

5. Preliminary Notice Date:

Include the date when you provided the property owner, contractor, and/or subcontractor with preliminary notice. Preliminary notice serves as a formal notification of your intent to file a construction lien if you're not compensated for your work or materials.

6. Statutory Warning:

Your Claim of Lien must feature a specific statutory warning, the language of which can be found in Florida statutes. This warning is a legal requirement and adds an extra layer of legitimacy to your lien.

7. Signature:

Lastly, your Claim of Lien should bear your signature. Your signature confirms the accuracy and authenticity of the document.

Filing a construction lien in Florida can indeed be a complex process. The state's laws and regulations must be followed meticulously to ensure your lien's validity and enforceability. Given the intricacies involved, many individuals pursuing a construction lien opt to collaborate with legal professionals who can provide guidance and ensure all requirements are met.

Who Needs to Record a Claim of Lien on Private Projects?

If you have a direct contract with the property owner, you are responsible for recording the Claim of Lien. In such cases, there's no need to send a Notice to Owner since you have a direct agreement with the property owner. However, for subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, suppliers, and suppliers to sub-subcontractors, recording a Claim of Lien is essential to secure their right to payment in the project.

Claim of Lien on Public Projects

It's important to note that on public projects, the concept of lien rights doesn't apply; instead, it involves bond claims. While some individuals may still record Claims of Lien on public projects, these documents are essentially meaningless in a legal context. The clerks receiving these liens don't scrutinize them for accuracy; they merely check if they are signed and notarized.

When Must a Claim of Lien be Recorded?

Timing is crucial when it comes to recording a Claim of Lien. You must record your claim within 90 days from the date of your last work on the project. This 90-day period starts counting from the day after your final workday. If the 90th day falls on a weekend or a legal holiday when the clerk's office is closed, the deadline extends to the next business day. This means you could have up to 93 days to record your Claim of Lien.

What is Not Considered "Last Work"?

It's important to understand what doesn't count as "last work." Activities like punch list work, warranty work, and passing inspections are not considered last work on their own. Your last workday is the day you last physically performed tasks on the project. However, base contract work and approved change order work do constitute last work and can reset your lien rights if necessary.

Don't Wait Until the Last Minute

Waiting until the last minute to send your notice or record your Claim of Lien can be risky. The process of preparing and recording the lien takes time, especially in populous counties. Even electronic recording can take up to five days. It's essential to start the lien recording process around Day 60 from your last work on the project to ensure you're not rushing at the last moment, risking potential issues with your claim.

Key Takeaway

In conclusion, understanding the ins and outs of Claim of Lien is crucial for anyone involved in construction projects. By adhering to the timelines and requirements, you can protect your rights and secure the compensation you rightfully deserve for your hard work. Don't leave it to chance; ensure your financial interests are safeguarded through a well-executed Claim of Lien.

Ready to streamline your legal and compliance needs? Discover the efficiency, accuracy, and convenience of SunRay. Click here to explore our services and transform your business!

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
Preliminary Notice| SunRay Notice
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