California Mechanic’s Lien Law

CALIFORNIA CODES
CIVIL CODE
SECTION 8410-8424, as of 2/1/2012

8410.  A claimant may enforce a lien only if the claimant has given
preliminary notice to the extent required by Chapter 2 (commencing
with Section 8200) and made proof of notice.

8412.  A direct contractor may not enforce a lien unless the
contractor records a claim of lien after the contractor completes the
direct contract, and before the earlier of the following times:
   (a) Ninety days after completion of the work of improvement.
   (b) Sixty days after the owner records a notice of completion or
cessation.

8414.  A claimant other than a direct contractor may not enforce a
lien unless the claimant records a claim of lien within the following
times:
   (a) After the claimant ceases to provide work.
   (b) Before the earlier of the following times:
   (1) Ninety days after completion of the work of improvement.
   (2) Thirty days after the owner records a notice of completion or
cessation.

8416.  (a) A claim of mechanics lien shall be a written statement,
signed and verified by the claimant, containing all of the following:
   (1) A statement of the claimant's demand after deducting all just
credits and offsets.
   (2) The name of the owner or reputed owner, if known.
   (3) A general statement of the kind of work furnished by the
claimant.
   (4) The name of the person by whom the claimant was employed or to
whom the claimant furnished work.
   (5) A description of the site sufficient for identification.
   (6) The claimant's address.
   (7) A proof of service affidavit completed and signed by the
person serving a copy of the claim of mechanics lien pursuant to
subdivision (c). The affidavit shall show the date, place, and manner
of service, and facts showing that the service was made in
accordance with this section. The affidavit shall show the name and
address of the owner or reputed owner upon whom the copy of the claim
of mechanics lien was served pursuant to paragraphs (1) or (2) of
subdivision (c), and the title or capacity in which the person or
entity was served.
   (8) The following statement, printed in at least 10-point boldface
type. The letters of the last sentence shall be printed in uppercase
type, excepting the Internet Web site address of the Contractors'
State License Board, which shall be printed in lowercase type:

      "NOTICE OF MECHANICS LIEN       ATTENTION!
  Upon the   recording of the
  enclosed   MECHANICS LIEN
  with the county
  recorder's office
  of the county
  where the
  property is
  located, your
  property is
  subject to the
  filing of a legal
  action seeking a
  court-ordered
  foreclosure sale
  of the real
  property on which
  the lien has been
  recorded. That
  legal action must
  be filed with the
  court no later
  than 90 days
  after the date
  the
  mechanics lien is
  recorded.
  The party
  identified in the
  enclosed
  mechanics lien
  may have provided
  labor or
  materials for
  improvements to
  your property and
  may not have been
  paid for these
  items. You are
  receiving this
  notice because it
  is a required
  step in filing a
  mechanics lien
  foreclosure
  action against
  your property.
  The foreclosure
  action will seek
  a sale of your
  property in order
  to pay for unpaid
  labor, materials,
  or improvements
  provided to your
  property. This
  may affect your
  ability to borrow
  against,
  refinance, or
  sell the property
  until the
  mechanics lien is
  released.
  BECAUSE THE LIEN
  AFFECTS YOUR
  PROPERTY, YOU MAY
  WISH TO SPEAK
  WITH YOUR
  CONTRACTOR
  IMMEDIATELY, OR
  CONTACT AN
  ATTORNEY, OR FOR
  MORE INFORMATION
  ON MECHANICS
  LIENS GO TO THE
  CONTRACTORS'
  STATE LICENSE
  BOARD WEB SITE AT
  www.cslb.ca.gov."

   (b) A claim of mechanics lien in otherwise proper form, verified
and containing the information required in subdivision (a), shall be
accepted by the recorder for recording and shall be deemed duly
recorded without acknowledgment.
   (c) A copy of the claim of mechanics lien, which includes the
Notice of Mechanics Lien required by paragraph (8) of subdivision
(a), shall be served on the owner or reputed owner. Service shall be
made as follows:
   (1) For an owner or reputed owner to be notified who resides in or
outside this state, by registered mail, certified mail, or
first-class mail, evidenced by a certificate of mailing, postage
prepaid, addressed to the owner or reputed owner at the owner's or
reputed owner's residence or place of business address or at the
address shown by the building permit on file with the authority
issuing a building permit for the work, or as otherwise provided in
Section 8174.
   (2) If the owner or reputed owner cannot be served by this method,
then the copy of the claim of mechanics lien may be given by
registered mail, certified mail, or first-class mail, evidenced by a
certificate of mailing, postage prepaid, addressed to the
construction lender or to the original contractor.
   (d) Service of the copy of the claim of mechanics lien by
registered mail, certified mail, or first-class mail, evidenced by a
certificate of mailing, postage prepaid, is complete at the time of
the deposit of that first-class, certified, or registered mail.
   (e) Failure to serve the copy of the claim of mechanics lien as
prescribed by this section, including the Notice of Mechanics Lien
required by paragraph (8) of subdivision (a), shall cause the claim
of mechanics lien to be unenforceable as a matter of law.

8422.  (a) Except as provided in subdivisions (b) and (c), erroneous
information contained in a claim of lien relating to the claimant's
demand, credits and offsets deducted, the work provided, or the
description of the site, does not invalidate the claim of lien.
   (b) Erroneous information contained in a claim of lien relating to
the claimant's demand, credits and offsets deducted, or the work
provided, invalidates the claim of lien if the court determines
either of the following:
   (1) The claim of lien was made with intent to defraud.
   (2) An innocent third party, without notice, actual or
constructive, became the bona fide owner of the property after
recordation of the claim of lien, and the claim of lien was so
deficient that it did not put the party on further inquiry in any
manner.
   (c) Any person who shall willfully include in a claim of lien
labor, services, equipment, or materials not furnished for the
property described in the claim, shall thereby forfeit the person's
lien.

8424.  (a) An owner of real property or an owner of any interest in
real property subject to a recorded claim of lien, or a direct
contractor or subcontractor affected by the claim of lien, that
disputes the correctness or validity of the claim may obtain release
of the real property from the claim of lien by recording a lien
release bond. The principal on the bond may be the owner of the
property, the direct contractor, or the subcontractor.
   (b) The bond shall be conditioned on payment of any judgment and
costs the claimant recovers on the lien. The bond shall be in an
amount equal to 125 percent of the amount of the claim of lien or 125
percent of the amount allocated in the claim of lien to the real
property to be released. The bond shall be executed by an admitted
surety insurer.
   (c) The bond may be recorded either before or after commencement
of an action to enforce the lien. On recordation of the bond, the
real property is released from the claim of lien and from any action
to enforce the lien.
   (d) A person that obtains and records a lien release bond shall
give notice to the claimant. The notice shall comply with the
requirements of Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 8100) of Title 1
and shall include a copy of the bond. Failure to give the notice
required by this section does not affect the validity of the bond,
but the statute of limitations for an action on the bond is tolled
until notice is given. The claimant shall commence an action on the
bond within six months after notice is given.

Comments are closed.