Contractors Don’t Lose Your Lien Rights
Under Florida’s Construction Lien Law, a contractor who is in privity with the property owner is required to execute and deliver a Contractor’s Final Payment Affidavit to the owner at least five days before filing suit to enforce the contractor’s lien.
The purpose of the Contractor’s Final Payment Affidavit is to provide a sworn statement to the owner identifying any lienors who have not been paid in full and specifying how much money is still owed to those lienors.
Contractor’s Final Payment Affidavit Under Florida Lien Law
A contractor’s failure to provide the Contractor’s Final Payment Affidavit under lien law at least five days before filing suit will result in the contractor losing their lien rights. In fact, the statute explicitly states that a “contractor shall have no lien or right of action against the owner for labor, services, or materials furnished under the direct contract while in default for not giving the owner the affidavit.”
However, this pre-suit requirement only applies to contractors who contract directly with the owner. This means that subcontractors or other lienors who do not have a direct contract with owner, do not need to serve a Contractor’s Final Payment Affidavit before filing suit.
Florida’s Construction Lien Law can be tricky, and compliance is crucial to the successful enforcement of a contractor’s lien. If you’re a contractor who needs help enforcing your lien rights, you should retain a competent litigation attorney familiar with Florida’s Construction Lien Law to represent you.