Is it possible to get together with other mechanic’s lien filers on a property and file one complaint to foreclose?

Asked over 1 year ago - Redwood City, CA

When we filed a mechanic’s lien on a property because the home owner refused to pay the balance of our invoice for work he asked us to do, we notice 3-4 other trades had filed liens as well. The attorney’s fees to file our lawsuit to foreclose on the house is going to be more than what he owes us. 1. Can we rally the others who filed a lien and collectively sue to foreclose? 2. Also, if that is not possible, what happens to our mechanic’s lien, if one of those companies ahead of us files a complaint to foreclose on the property before it is time for us to foreclose? Would the first entity that forecloses void the rest of the liens on the property?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Wahid Ezzat Guirguis

    Contributor Level 9

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Yea possible to have one attorney represent all but there will have to be conflict waivers signed. We have done hundred of these. Feel free to call me.

  2. Douglas Patrick Flaherty

    Contributor Level 5

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . As a technical legal matter, when a claimant files suit to foreclose on a Mechanics' Lien, that claimant is supposed to name (as parties to the lawsuit) all other lien claimants. Mechanics' Liens on one project all attach at the same time, and all are given equal dignity, so the lien from the grader and the lien from the painter are equal in the eyes of the law, even though the grader did her work well before the painter did his.
    If you have a direct contract with the owner of the property, and there is not any good faith dispute about the amount owed, then the owner could be subject to a penalty of 2% per month on the amount wrongfully withheld, and the owner could be liable for your attorneys' fees and costs incurred in the lawsuit. (Civil Code 8800).
    You may have a variety of remedies for non-payment or you may have no remedies, but until you sit down with an experienced construction attorney and explain the entire situation, you may not know which situation you are in.

    Construction projects and the legal rights and remedies that flow from them are legally technical and factually... more
  3. Cathleen M Curl

    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . Yes, I agree that it is possible for all of the lien claimants to band together and collectively sue to foreclose. There are conflict waivers of interest that everyone needs to sign. It can be troublesome, however, if it turns out there are problems with the work of 1 or more of the other contractors. All of the lien claimants would be named as parties in the action so no one would be able to foreclose first.

Related Topics

Lien

A lien gives a creditor certain rights to a debtor's property in order to ensure payment of a debt. Liens can be either voluntary or involuntary.

Howard Robert Roitman

Medicare Liens

Federal law generally prohibits Medicare from paying for any item or service where payment can reasonably be expected from another "primary" source within 120 days.

Real property ownership

Several different kinds of property ownership exist, including joint tenancy, tenancy in common and more. The right one for you depends on your circumstances.

Andrew Ben Boyer

DIVIDING REAL ESTATE IN DIVORCE

On behalf of Andrew Boyer PC posted on Tuesday, April 23, 2013 Any divorce has the potential to be a massively complicated affair. Many Illinois couples spend months in court arguing... more

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.

 

Ask now

24,952 answers this week

2,987 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

24,952 answers this week

2,987 attorneys answering