Establishing Lien Rights without a Direct Contract in Alabama
In Alabama, laborers, material suppliers, or any other person or firm that furnished work, labor, or material on a piece of property has a valid claim for a lien. Liens of this type are called mechanic's or construction liens. In Alabama, a claimant can claim either a full price or an unpaid balance lien. A full price lien is available to contractors that have contracted directly with the owner for the full price of labor, services, or materials. An unpaid balance lien is available for laborers, subcontractors, or materials suppliers without a direct contract and a lien is limited only to the unpaid balance.
Upon complying with the provisions of Alabama lien law, lien claimants shall have a lien on the building or improvements as well as on the land on which these are situated. Ala. Code Ann. 35-11-210. The lien exists to the extent in ownership of all the right, title, and interest therein of the owner or proprietor, and to the extent in area of the entire lot or parcel of land in a city or town; or, if not in a city or town, of one acre in addition to the land upon which the building or improvement is situated. Id. Further, if employees of the contractor or persons furnishing material to him or her claim a lien, the lien shall extend only to the amount of any unpaid balance due the contractor by the owner or proprietor, and the employees and materialmen shall also have a lien on the unpaid balance. Id.
To preserve the option for lien rights, a potential claimant must notify the owner or responsible party before furnishing any materials for the project. By including prices in the notice, the furnisher of the material shall have a lien for the full price specified, without regard to whether or not the amount of the claim for the material so furnished exceeds the unpaid balance due the contractor. Id. However, if the owner or proprietor or his or her agent objects to the price, this may not be the case. Id.
Unless the owner or proprietor or his or her agent shall notify the furnisher in writing before the material is used, that he or she will not be responsible for the price thereof, the claimant will be entitled to a full price lien. Id.
The notice contains the name of the owner or proprietor as well as the name and address of the contractor or subcontractor and a description of the owner's property. File the completed notice with the local recording office for the county where the property is located.
This article is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for the advice from an attorney. Please speak with an attorney for questions regarding lien notices or any other issues related to liens in Alabama.
Deeds.com Alabama Declaration of Lien Rights Forms Have Been Updated as Recently as Tuesday August 13, 2019
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Select County where the property is located.