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Did construction work, didnt get paid, filed mechanics lien, filed suit within 90 days, served, never heard from homeowner..

Los Angeles, CA |

I filed and served the lawsuit properly. I have proper proof of service. It's been 30 days now and I haven't heard from the homeowner. I now want to seek a default judgment. I am getting confused. My complaint states an action for breach of contract (about $6k), as well as foreclosure of mechanic's lien. Should I file for a court judgment or clerk judgment?. Or do I go for both? - a clerk judgment on the contract $6k amount, and a court judgment on foreclosing the property. Also, before asking for court/clerk judgment, should I first file the request for entry of default? Are they seriously going to take this guy's million dollar home and sell it to pay me my $6k? Because, if so, that would be awesome. Thanks!

Attorney Answers 4


  1. This is more complicated than you think. First you need to file a request for entry of default. Then you need to request a default judgment. You should ask for a court judgment, the clerk will not enter the default on the foreclosure cause of action. If you are successful you will now have a paper judgment that you need to enforce. You will need to record an abstract of judgment at that point you need to look into enforcing your judgment. Foreclosing on a property is a complicated procedure and very costly for you to enforce and may not be worth your $6,000.00 judgment. Remember your judgment will increase as it sits on the property. The courts will not automatically foreclose on the property for you. You really need to consult with an attorney to collect on your judgment at that point or you may want to consult with one now.


  2. You need to file your Proof of Service on the homeowner with the Court, if you haven't done so already. If it was done by a process server, they will give you a written Proof of Service document. If it was not done by a process server, then you will need to have the person who served it file a Declaration of Service, and file that with the Court. Be sure to keep a copy for yourself. The next thing to do is to file a Request to Enter Default against the homeowner with the Court, and send a copy to the homeowner. This will prevent them from filing a response why you are working on your judgment. Then you will need to Request a Default Judgment with the Court. You will need to set a hearing to foreclose the lien. This is complicated. I advise you to consult with an experienced construction attorney right away.


  3. You first file a request for entry of default and then you have to file a default judgment packet. When the judgement is issued, then you can collect upon it using a variety of methods.


  4. I agree with all of my colleagues here. I just wanted to add something because you asked:

    "Are they seriously going to take this guy's million dollar home and sell it to pay me my $6k? Because, if so, that would be awesome."

    The short answer here is just this: Yes, liens are awesome!

    My Mechanics Lien Filing Service at www.zlien.com. Our number is 866-720-5436. Avvo's terms and conditions apply, answers on Avvo are general responses to hypothetical scenarios presented by questioner.