Legal Question in Construction Law in California

A subcontractor worked on my home, and was not paid by the Contractor due to a past debt. The subcontractor threatened a Lien against my house if I do not pay him. There was no contract between the subcontractor & the contractor, can the subcontractor successfully put a lien on my house?

Asked on 12/21/11, 10:08 am

2 Answers from Attorneys


If subcontractor did work on your house he has mechanic's lien rights! BUT he may have blown those rights if he failed to serve "20 day" notice in a timely manner, or if he failed to file a timely lien. Did you file a "notice of completion"? or a "notice of cessation"? If the subcontractor does file the threatened lien, he still must file a law suit in a timely manner. Mechanic's liens are very tricky and you should talk to a construction lawyer to be safe.

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Answered on 12/21/11, 10:37 am
Timothy McCormick Haapala, Thompson & Abern, LLP

Mr. Fruchter is correct. The absence of a contract will not have any effect on the lien rights, but there are a lot of details that must be attended to before a lien will be valid.

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Answered on 12/21/11, 5:26 pm

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