Parties involved in construction projects typically execute contracts establishing their rights and duties, such as when payments will be made and in what amount. Unfortunately, property owners do not always fulfill their contractual obligations, and contractors, design professionals, and other parties that work on the property often suffer financial losses due to insufficient or absent payments. If you worked on a construction project and the owner of the property failed to pay you, you may be able to file a construction lien against the property to protect your rights. The seasoned Atlanta construction lien attorneys of Poole Huffman are proficient at helping contractors, builders, and design professionals safeguard their financial interests, and if you haven’t been paid for a project you worked on, we can help you file and enforce construction liens. We regularly assist clients with issues arising out of construction projects in Atlanta and in Decatur and Tucker.Construction Liens Against Properties
Pursuant to Georgia law, many parties that aren’t paid after working on a construction project can file a lien against the property for which they provided services or materials. The lien must set forth the amount due pursuant to an express or implied contract, purchase order, or subcontract, as well as any interest owed.
The law is broad in scope and provides that anyone who provides services, materials, or labor for a project may file a lien, including contractors, subcontractors, architects, engineers, surveyors, parties leasing machinery, and materialmen. If the party seeking to file a lien requires a license under Georgia law, it must also have a license to file a lien. Speak with a construction lien lawyer serving Atlanta to understand more about these licenses.
In some instances, a party who wants to file a lien must first file a Preliminary Notice of Lien rights. Whether such notice is required depends on numerous factors, including whether a Notice of Commencement was filed at the start of the job, whether it is a private or public construction project, and whether the party contracted directly with the property owner.Filing and Enforcing Construction Liens
A party that is eligible to file a lien on a property must file a claim of lien in the county where the project is located within ninety days of when it last furnished services or materials to the project. The claim of lien must include information about the property as well as a statement regarding when the lien will expire and a notice to the property owner regarding the right to contest the lien. If the statement and notice are absent, it will render the lien invalid. A construction lien attorney serving the Atlanta area can assist with creating this statement. Additionally, within two business days of filing the claim of lien, the party must send a copy of the claim of lien to the property owner via certified or registered mail or overnight delivery. If a Notice of Commencement was filed, the party must also send a copy of the claim of lien to the contractor listed on the Notice.
It is important to note that the lien will expire within 365 days of its filing and will no longer be enforceable. As such, any action to enforce a lien must be pursued within one year of when the claim of lien was filed. If the property owner or general contractor files a Notice of Contest of Lien, however, the party who filed the lien must initiate an enforcement action within sixty days of receiving the Notice of Contest of Lien. Additionally, within thirty days after instituting an action to enforce a lien, the party must file a Notice of Commencement of Lien Action. The failure to meet either the deadline for filing an enforcement action or for filing the Notice of Commencement of Lien Action will result in the expiration of the lien claim.Confer with an Assertive Attorney
If you worked on a construction project but weren’t compensated, filing a lien against the property may help you to recover the money you are owed. The assertive Atlanta construction lien lawyers of Poole Huffman are skilled at helping parties file and enforce such liens, and we can advise you of your options and assist you in seeking a prompt resolution of your dispute. We frequently help people with issues relating to construction projects and real estate disputes in Atlanta and in Decatur, as well as in Tucker, where we have an office. Additionally, we assist clients with construction-related issues in cities throughout Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb, and Gwinnett Counties. You can contact us to set up a confidential meeting via our form online or by calling 404-373-4008.