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Old 08-16-2008, 07:39 PM
 
Location: FL
200 posts, read 658,890 times
Reputation: 49

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Hey Guys - have a question.
My mother-in-law passed away last week as my husband and I traveled out to ARKANSAS to see her - upon arrival to help with "the ends" of things along with my husband's brothers, we noticed she had a lien against her home.

She had her roof reshingled. She paid the company owner (who came out and made the estimate) the full price upon completion, but he did not pay the guy (laborer) who actually did the work. She has a copy of the cancelled check and yet the actual laborer, who worked for this guy, never got paid.

The laborer put a lien against her home. She went to see her attorney and showed him the cancelled check showing she paid the company in FULL and yet it is LEGAL in AR that the laborer can "say he did not get paid and put a lien on the homeowner". So our next question to him was "how can you prove the laborer did not get paid" (not saying he did or did not) and the attny said they is no way, and that it IS LEGAL for this to happen. But wouldn't ya think the company owner, who DID receive the money and hired this laborer, would be held liable? The attny said it was legal in AR for the laborer to do that - said it was stupid in his thoughts, and advised us to hold off and hopefully it will expire.....(gesh!) - so my question is this - is that possible in TN? I mean that sure sounds wrong. A poor homeowner building a home (which we hope to be within this next year) could be held liable for so much. Who says they were paid or not? WOW! Just wanted to ask you all about this.
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Old 08-17-2008, 12:35 PM
 
107 posts, read 292,095 times
Reputation: 144
I don't know about TN, but it is legal here in Arizona. You have to make sure that you get a lien release form EVERY subcontractor that works on your house. Just because you paid the contractor doesn't mean that he, in turn, paid the subs. I insisted on lien releases (for completed work) before I would release the next draw. This is not perfect as there is always some lag time and it may (probably will) cause some friction between you and the contractor, but it keeps everyone on the same page as far as where the money is going/has gone.
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Old 08-17-2008, 04:40 PM
 
22,332 posts, read 65,681,691 times
Reputation: 44888
That type of law (mechanics lien) has been common in every state I have lived. 1967hammer has it right, you have to be careful who you hire and make sure the subs get paid. If you use reputable contractors, it generally isn't a problem. It WAS a big problem in Florida, where pool, roofing, and siding contractors would go belly up and not pay their workers.

One other thought. When hiring a contractor, you might specify as part of the contract which people (by name) will be working on your property, and make sure to verify that they are covered by worker's comp. under the contractor's insurance package. Having a day laborer injured on the job can be a world of hurt for everyone.
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Old 08-18-2008, 07:51 AM
 
Location: FL
200 posts, read 658,890 times
Reputation: 49
Gosh - my husband and I built our own home up in IOWA back in 1978-80 and never had that as a problem but ya know we did most of our work, just never heard of this. THANKS A LOT GUYS!! Really appreciate the info. I like being "aware" and smarter in these dealings! THANKS!!!
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Old 08-18-2008, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Stewartsville, NJ
7,577 posts, read 21,829,384 times
Reputation: 1258
how much is the lien for? Make him an offer..so much on the dollar! And if it's a huge amount..take the original contractor to court?
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Old 08-18-2008, 09:15 AM
 
3,763 posts, read 12,036,010 times
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If you are building a house today - make sure you get PERSONAL title insurance. The mortgage lender will make sure you get title insurance for THEM - but you want to get a policy that protects YOU. It researches the title to make sure there are no Liens against the proprety (from the construction crews, or previous land holder or whatever) and if it misses something and someone comes out of the woodwork - it pays up to fight the case and protect you. Of course it only covers up to the time you buy the policy - so if you decide to remodel your roof and stiff the workers 2 years AFTER you buy it - you are not protected. But you are protected for everything prior to the time you get the policy.
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Old 08-18-2008, 11:14 AM
 
24,841 posts, read 36,047,440 times
Reputation: 11523
Quote:
Originally Posted by wileynj View Post
how much is the lien for? Make him an offer..so much on the dollar! And if it's a huge amount..take the original contractor to court?
I charge $200 a mouth plus interest to have a lien on. I would not take a dime less.
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Old 08-18-2008, 12:02 PM
 
Location: FL
200 posts, read 658,890 times
Reputation: 49
The lein was for $1600 - the attny said to wait as it will expire so we can then sell the home. This was done a few months ago, may have even been almost a year (checking into that now).

Driller - what do you mean - you charge $200 a month + interest? Meaning you have put a lien on a home?

Wow this just sounds so silly, she paid, has cancelled check, period.... but I guess that is the name of the game now - protect...protect....protect. GESH! Thanks guys for this info - it is going to our entire family to be aware.
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Old 08-18-2008, 02:00 PM
 
24,841 posts, read 36,047,440 times
Reputation: 11523
Quote:
Originally Posted by TeeJayMaJay View Post
The lein was for $1600 - the attny said to wait as it will expire so we can then sell the home. This was done a few months ago, may have even been almost a year (checking into that now).

Driller - what do you mean - you charge $200 a month + interest? Meaning you have put a lien on a home?

Wow this just sounds so silly, she paid, has cancelled check, period.... but I guess that is the name of the game now - protect...protect....protect. GESH! Thanks guys for this info - it is going to our entire family to be aware.
Yes, I have. Twice. Got my money both times. One women paid almost $1000 for a $109 permit. I sign contracts.
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Old 08-18-2008, 02:23 PM
 
Location: Stewartsville, NJ
7,577 posts, read 21,829,384 times
Reputation: 1258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Driller1 View Post
Yes, I have. Twice. Got my money both times. One women paid almost $1000 for a $109 permit. I sign contracts.
I must say.."knock on wood" but I've been in the contracting business for 11 yrs. now and have never had to lien anyone's property! I've had to chase people down but I've always been paid! Must be that NJ Soprano State Stigma..lol
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