Great news! You’ve found a contractor to remodel your kitchen. He finishes the job, you pay him, and you think the deal is done. Unfortunately, that is not the case: your contractor failed to pay the material supplier, and the amount owed is $20,000.
“But I paid the contractor,” you say. “Go after him.”
Although this seems like the logical response, it is not the way Florida law works. If you pay your contractor in full, and he fails to pay the subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, or material suppliers, a lien can still be placed against your home.
That’s right! If your contractor does not pay one of the other workers, you could end up paying the $20,000 twice and there is almost no defense to protect you from this kind of lien.
There is no defense to this because the claimant is abiding by Florida law. The only way to protect yourself from this happening is through preventative measures: namely, a stipulation in the contract. The contract should stipulate that your contractor should provide you with a written release from lien from any person or company that has provided to you a “Notice to Owner” before you pay him.
The same thing can happen if you hire someone to remodel your bathroom, repair your roof, or even fix a fence in your yard.
If you are thinking about hiring a contractor, you should contact Boyer Law Firm first. Our expertise in contract law will protect you from this somewhat insane law.
***If you have received a “Notice to Owner,” you should contact an attorney immediately. Florida construction laws are complicated, and if the notice turns into a lien, your property can go into foreclosure and be sold out from under you.***