Materialman Lien

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What is a materialman’s lien? A materialman’s lien is a lien imposed by law on real
property in order to guarantee payment for the work performed or materials furnished for
the construction, repair, alteration, or development of real property.

Why were mechanic’s lien laws passed? The legislature wanted to promote justice and
economic activity. A property owner should not be able to enjoy the labor and materials
furnished by others without compensation. Additionally, materialman’s lien laws make it
safer for those in the construction industry to extend credit to property owners, thereby
increasing the likelihood that they will extend credit.

What steps must a person take to create a valid materialman’s lien?

       1. The person seeking to create the lien (the lienor) must substantially fulfill his
          or her obligations under the contract.

       2. The lienor must file for record his or her claim of lien within three months
          after the completion of work or furnishing of material or services in the office
          of the clerk of the superior court of the county where the property is situated.
          Note that the claim must specify the amount claimed due under the lien and
          the date the claim was due or else the lien does not constitute notice for any
          purpose. Note also that although the Georgia Code does not require a
          signature, the usual practice is for the lienor, his agent or attorney to sign the

       3. At the time of filing for record his or her claim of lien, the lien claimant must
          send a copy of the claim of lien by registered or certified mail to the owner of
          the property or the contractor, as the agent of the owner.

       4. Next, the lienor must commence an action for the recovery of the amount of
          the claim within 12 months from the time the same shall become due.

Where can I find more information about filing a valid materialman’s lien?

   •   O.C.G.A. § 44-14-361

   •   Hinkel, Daniel F. Georgia Construction Mechanics’ & Materialmen’s Liens:
       With Forms. Norcross, Georgia: The Harrison Company, 1998.
   COUNTY OF _____________________

    _______________________________________________________, a mechanic,
contractor, subcontractor, materialman, machinist, manufacturer, registered architect,
registered forester, registered land surveyor, registered professional engineer, or other
person (as the case may be) claims a lien in the amount of
$_______________________________ on the house, factory, mill, machinery, or
railroad (as the case may be) and the premises or real estate on which it is erected or
built, of ______________________________________(owner’s name). The legal
description of the property is as follows:
(describing the houses, premises, real estate, or railroad)

    Said lien is for satisfaction of a claim which became due on ______________(specify
the date the claim was due) for building, repairing, improving, or furnishing material (or
whatever the claim may be).

   Name of potential lien claimant
   Clerk, Superior Court of ________________________ County
   County Courthouse

   Re: Preliminary notice of lien rights

    Dear Sir or Madam:
        The undersigned has, within the preceding 30 days, provided labor, services, and
materials consisting of _____________________________________________________
    (describe kind)
    For the improvements of property owned by ________________________________,
    located at ____________________________________________________________
(give description)
The work was performed at the insistence of ___________________________________
(contractor/homeowner), whose mailing address is :______________________________
        Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 44-14-361.3, we request that you file this letter as
preliminary notice of lien rights in your records maintained for that purpose and enclose
herewith a check in the amount of $____________ to cover the cost of filing.

Very truly yours,

Name of potential lien claimant
Address: __________________________________________________
Telephone number: _________________________________

Contractor or Owner: _________________________________
Address: ___________________________________________

Dear _____________________________:
       Enclosed herewith please find a copy of the preliminary notice of lien rights
which, within the preceding seven days, has been filed with the Clerk of Superior Court
of _____________________ County, Georgia.
       This notice is being provided to you in accordance with the provisions of
O.G.G.A. § 44-14-361.3(b).

Yours very truly,

Potential lien claimant

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