If you are a contractor or supplier working in the construction industry in Texas, it is important to understand the mechanics lien process. A mechanics lien is a legal claim that can get filed against the property owner if payment for services or materials provided has not been received. Understanding the steps that you need to take in order to file a lien can help you protect your rights.
Send a notice of intent to lien to the property owner
You need to send this notice by the 15th day of the second month after the date on which the last furnishing of labor or materials occurred. One of the things this notice has to include is the name and address of the person who provided the labor or materials, as well as a description of the work done. The notice also needs to include the amount owed as well as the date on which payment is due. A description of the property on which the work was performed is also required.
File the notice of intent to lien with the county clerk
Once you have prepared and sent the notice of intent to lien, you then need to file it with the county clerk in the county where the property is. This may help to prevent the property owner from selling or transferring the property without paying you what’s owed.
Provide written notice to the property owner of the filed lien
After you have filed the notice of intent to lien with the county clerk, you must then provide a written notice to the property owner that includes a copy of the filed lien. This notice should be sent within five days after the filing.
File a lawsuit to foreclose on the lien
If payment is not received within 30 days after you have sent the notice of the filed lien, you can then file a lawsuit to foreclose on the lien. This construction litigation process will allow you to get a court order that will require the sale of the property in order to pay off the debt.
Ultimately, the Texas mechanics lien process is usually designed to help contractors and suppliers get paid for the work that they have performed. Understanding the steps involved can help you have a better chance of getting the payment that you’re owed.