When you supply goods or labor in Florida as a contractor or subcontractor in any number of different trades, you may find that it is not always easy to collect payment from those who owe you. In some instances, you may have to resort to certain collection tactics to get paid for the work or materials you provided. Many contractors and subcontractors who need to collect payment from others do so by filing a construction lien claim.
Per the Florida Bar, construction liens were once known as mechanic’s liens and are both common and complex. While they give you a way to collect an outstanding debt, you have to file a lien properly and within a particular timeframe for it to be valid.
Who construction liens serve
You may be able to get compensation for your work provided or materials supplied through a construction lien if you work as a roofer, electrician, carpenter or in a similar capacity. You may also be able to work toward collecting past-due payments via this method if you work as an engineer, architect, landscape architect or interior designer, among similar professional roles.
When and how to file a construction lien
You have to file your construction lien within the county where you performed your construction or improvement-related services or supplied your construction materials. You must do so either within 90 days of the date you last supplied goods or time or 90 days from the date the contractor who employed you faced termination – whichever date is earlier.
There are specific documents you must file when making a lien claim. Failing to file all appropriate documents and meet all deadlines may result in your lien claim proving unsuccessful.