Under Cal. Civ. Code 8182, a real property owner can record a notice of completion at any time up to 15 days after the date of completion on a work of improvement. The notice of completion is an important document in the California mechanic's lien process, as it limits the time a claimant is allotted to file a claim of lien. A direct contractor has 60 days after the owner's filing of a notice of completion to file a claim of lien. If no notice of completion is filed within 15 days of completion of the project, the contractor has 90 days to file a claim of lien.
A lawful notice contains the name and address of each owner and the nature of the owner's interest or estate in the property, as well as the construction lender's name and address, if applicable. The notice gives the completion date and a general description of the work of improvement, as well as a legal description of the property on which the improvement is made, along with the property's address.
In California, a notice of completion may relate to the completion of a contract for work on an improvement as a whole or a contract for a portion of work. In either instance, the notice states the name and address of the direct contractor and the nature of the notice.
The notice is signed and verified by the owner, who is the person (or persons) with titled interest in the property. This may or may not be the person occupying the property. The notice may be signed by an owner's successor; if this is the case, the notice must state the name and address of the transferor.
Within 10 days of recording a notice of completion, the owner must serve copies to the direct contractor and any claimant who has given the owner preliminary notice. Failure to give notice to the contractor or a claimant that a notice has been filed within 10 days of recording the notice renders the notice ineffective to shorten the length of time a contractor has to file a claim of lien.
The method of serving notice on the requisite parties must comply with Section 8100 of the Civil Code of California. Proof of service of notice is required along with the notice when recording. The declaration of proof of service evidences the method of serving notice and is signed by the person serving notice and acknowledged in the presence of a notary public.
Record a notice of completion in the recorder's office of the county where the property is situated. Ensure that the document is in recordable form as established by Cal. Gov. Code Sec. 27361.6.
Consult a lawyer with questions about notices of completion, mechanic's lien laws, or for any other issues regarding real property in the State of California.
Deeds.com California Notice of Completion Forms Have Been Updated as Recently as Wednesday March 20, 2019
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