Should we sign an Unconditioinal Final Waiver of Mechanics Lien and Claim without payment from our customer?

Asked over 1 year ago - Milford, MI

We filed a lien against a project our customer owes us on. Customer sent a Unconditional Final Waiver of Mechanics Lien and Claim for us to complete without being paid. They stated they can't get paid without these documents and once they are paid they will pay us. Here's the wording in question: Furthermore, the undersigned certifies to Owner as of the date hereof (i) the work to be performed by the undersigned in connection with this project (including all approved change and extra work orders) is complete; and (ii) upon payment in full of the above referenced Invoice Number the undersigned has been paid all amounts due to in connection with the project (including all approved change and extra work orders). Does that mean they will pay us even after we release the lien?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Denis C. Monahan

    Contributor Level 12

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    Answered . Absolutely do not sign a Unconditional Final Waiver of Mechanics Lien and Claim without being paid. Once you sign that form, you will have waived your lien rights even if the customer never pays you. There is another form called a conditional final waiver of lien which states the total amount you must be paid to satisfy your lien but it does not become effective until you receive actual payment. You can also tell that customer that you will come the lender with the customer and exchange the waiver for a direct payment from the lender.
    The language that you are quoting sounds somewhat like a conditional waiver of lien, but the title says "Unconditional" so there is some issue there. If the amount you are owed is enough to matter to you you should consider consulting an attorney.

  2. Loren M. Dickstein

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

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    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . You really need to hire a lawyer to look at the document and consult with you. There are several other questions an attorney would need to talk to you about before he or she could give you a reliable answer.

  3. Guillermo Marquez Tello

    Contributor Level 6

    Answered . Do not sign an "unconditional" waiver without payment. Typically only a "conditional" waiver is required to obtain payment. You should consult with an attorney.

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