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How mechanic’s liens help contractors, suppliers collect payment

On Behalf of | Apr 29, 2023 | Construction Contracts

When you assist on a Texas construction project by supplying labor or materials, you may find it difficult to collect payment for services rendered or materials supplied. Mechanic’s liens exist to give you a potential remedy in the event you never receive payment for your efforts.

Per the Texas Statutes, a mechanic’s lien is something that becomes attached to the house, building or property you worked on that prevents the owner from selling it until you, the lien holder, receive the money owed to you.

Who may file a mechanic’s lien in Texas

If you supplied work or materials while working as a contractor or subcontractor in Texas, you have the option of filing a mechanic’s lien to collect payment owed to you. The same holds true if you assisted on a project as a material supplier, landscaper, architect, engineer, landscaper or interior designer.

How long you have to file a mechanic’s lien in Texas

How long you have to file a lien depends on the type of property you worked on. If you assisted with a residential project as a direct contractor, you must file your lien by the 15th day of the third month following the completion of your contract terms. If you assisted in a different capacity, you must do so by the 15th day of the third month after you supplied labor or materials or the 15th day of the third month after you would have had to deliver materials for the project. The terms are similar for commercial projects. However, direct contractors and others working on commercial projects both have until the 15th day of the fourth month, rather than the third month, to file liens.

Ultimately, what a mechanic’s lien does is give you a security interest in the property you helped improve.