Mechanic's Lien

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Mechanic's Lien

A charge or claim upon the property of another individual as security for a debt that is created in order to obtain priority of payment of the price or value of work that is performed and materials that are provided in the erection or repair of a building or other structure.



West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

mechanic's lien

n. the right of a craftsman, laborer, supplier, architect or other person who has worked upon improvements or delivered materials to a particular parcel of real estate (either as an employee of the owner or as a sub-contractor to a general contractor) to place a lien on that real property for the value of the services and/or materials if not paid. Numerous other technical laws surround mechanic's liens, including requirements of prompt written notice to the owner of the property and the amount still owed (even before the general contractor has been tardy in making payment), limits on the amount collectable in some states, and various time limitations to enforce the lien. Ultimate, last resort enforcement of the mechanic's lien is accomplished by filing a lawsuit to foreclose the lien and have the property sold in order to be paid. Property owners should make sure that their general contractors pay their employees or sub-contractors to avoid a mechanic's lien, since the owner could be forced to pay the debts of a general contractor even though the owner has already paid the contractor. If the worker or supplier does not sue to enforce the mechanic's lien, he/she may still sue for the debt. (See: lien)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Mechanics liens can be helpful for workers who have been unfairly denied compensation for their work.
"A mechanics lien gives a creditor a good position because it has an interest in the debtor's property.
Mechanics liens are built upon state statutes and based on the project's location--not where the customer is.
The purpose of this article is to provide a general overview of Illinois' mechanics lien law.
The mechanics lien claims of both contractors and subcontractors must be verified by the affidavit of the claimant and must contain:
Careful use of lien waiver forms can avoid unpaid mechanics lien claims.
In connection with privately owned construction projects, there is a potential right to a mechanics lien, the right to reach unexpended construction funds (often referred to as a notice to withhold), and in some circumstances, to a labor and material bond.
Our future agenda includes establishing a library of the actual mechanics lien and bond laws of each state and making it available to NACM members.
Briefly stated, Owens-Corning had perfected a mechanics lien on an automobile plant in Michigan several weeks prior to the preferential period.
The company can also assist with mortgage negotiations, mechanics liens, settlements, and contract preparation and review.
Where improvements are made to an existing improvement covered by a permanent loan deed of trust, the deed of trust will take priority over the mechanics liens.
Material suppliers, subcontractors, and general contractors for the improvement of real property are aware that mechanics liens are often the only recourse for protecting the assets of the company.