LEINS / PRE-LEINS
Preliminary 20-Day Notice
We received several calls this week from homeowners inquiring about Lien Notices they have received from suppliers pertaining to construction work being performed on their property. Arizona suppliers prepare what is called a 20-Day Preliminary Notice. This notice is issued by the supplier to the owner of the property on which the construction/renovation work is being done and describes the details of the work and the materials provided. In order for suppliers to have Lien rights for all the materials and services they provide, these companies serve a Preliminary 20-Day Notice within 20 days after they have first delivered materials to the job site. Every lien claimant, other than a laborer for wages files a Preliminary 2-Day Notice to the owner or reputed owner, the contractor or reputed contractor, the construction lender and the person with whom the supplier contracts. This notice is not a lien, but is intended to inform you as the property owner about the potential possibility for a lien to be filed in the future should your contractor not pay for materials in full. These notices do not mean that your contractor is a dead beat and is not financially responsible and is not a reflection on the integrity of any contractor, subcontractor or supplier. These notices are a mandatory prerequisite to a contractor’s or supplier’s right to later record a lien, or make a claim should the contractor not pay their obligations to the suppliers.
Should you ever receive a Preliminary 20-Day Notice, it would be extremely wise for you to take the simple step of asking your contractor to furnish a conditional waiver and release signed by the person or firm that sent you the notice before you make payment to your contractor. Then the second step would be to ask your contractor to furnish an unconditional waiver and release signed by the person or firm that sent you the notice after your make payment to your contractor.
Even if you do not receive Preliminary 20-Day Notices from a supplier or contractor, as good protection, anytime you make a payment you should ask your contractor for conditional and unconditional waivers. These are used in connection with receipt of a progress payment or final payment. All of these forms are on the YCCA web site
Should you have additional questions or concerns on Preliminary 20-Day Notice lien law, let us hear from you and we can drill down deeper as to this particular issue.