Lien Law Remedies

Lien Law Remedies

Overview

We have a thorough understanding of the recodified California lien laws. Members of our Construction Practice lecture on the various lien law remedies, the parties entitled to assert them, the conditions to those remedies, and the enforcement procedures and associated deadlines. We routinely counsel our clients in connection with mechanic's liens, stop payment notices, performance and payment bonds, security for large projects, prompt payment claims, and stop work notices. We also regularly prosecute and defend against these remedies in court.

The lien laws are very specific and must be followed exactly or, if not followed precisely, a lien may be deemed invalid or unenforceable. We are adept in assisting our clients in navigating the arcane maze of the lien laws and the many issues which arise under them, including by way of example:    

  • Who is entitled to assert the lien law remedies?
  • What property is subject to liens?
  • What amount can be included in lien and stop payment notices?
  • What protective procedures exist to minimize the risk of lien and stop payment notices?
  • How will construction loans be impacted by the recordation of a lien or the service of a stop payment notice?
  • What procedures and grounds exist for the expeditious removal of mechanic's liens and stop payment notices?
  • How can the deadlines for recording liens and serving stop payment notices be shortened?
  • How are the various lien law remedies enforced?
  • When is a project "complete" for lien law purposes?
  • Are attorney's fees recoverable?
  • What are the conditions to, and the remedies available for, a prompt payment violation?
  • Must the contractor continue to perform in the absence of payment?              

Our construction attorneys help answer these and other thorny questions in close consultation with our clients and develop practical solutions to lien law issues and to the underlying payment disputes which give rise to the use of the lien law remedies.

Representative
Matters

Represented numerous developers as defendants with respect to mechanic's lien claims filed against projects by contractors or subcontractors.

Represented a residential builder in multi-million dollar construction claims case against major general contractor. The project involved condominiums in residential towers in Marina Del Rey. The lawsuit involved mechanic's lien claims, as well as delay claims, change order claims, claims involving completion of construction and punch list work, and a smoke transfer claim. Obtained substantial settlement with general contractor and numerous additional settlements with subcontractors and suppliers.

Defended a major construction lender against mechanic's lien priority claims and bonded stop notice claims arising from borrower-owners' failures to manage projects.

Represented an owner designing a luxury resort in Utah in its efforts to remove a mechanic's lien via a lien release bond on the grounds that the consultant had not served a preliminary notice as required under Utah law and could not simultaneously seek to recover on the lien release bond and to foreclose on the property. Utah trial court first ruled that the bond was substitute security and consultant could not simultaneously proceed on its claim to foreclose on the lien, and later ruled that the lien was invalid since a preliminary was required – resulting in exoneration of the lien release bond and the recovery of attorney's fees.

Obtained dismissal in favor of an owner in defense of a mechanic's lien lawsuit brought by subcontractor who was not paid by general contractor.

Defended various lessor-owners against mechanic's lien and other claims against tenants, including restaurants and big box retailers.

Represented an office building owner in mechanic's lien lawsuits by general contractor and subcontractors when tenant failed to pay contractor for work for restaurant to be opened at the client's office building.

Litigated mechanics' lien claim on behalf of subcontractor against school district.

Attorneys &
Paralegals

Name Title City Phone  
Campbell, Robert G. Partner Los Angeles 310.284.2259
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Potter, Trevor B. Associate Orange County 949.260.4624
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Quigley, Edward F. Partner Los Angeles 310.284.2271
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Williams, Kenneth Partner Los Angeles 310.284.2209
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