Construction Frequently
Asked Questions.

Please check the following FAQ's below to find the answers to common questions

If you don't find the answer here, please contact us here.

Preliminary Notice FAQ

An Alaska Notice of Right to Lien is a letter sent by a contractor, laborer or supplier to the property owner at the start of a construction project. In many states, a preliminary notice is required to be sent in order to secure the right to lien.

Construction participants in Alaska have the option to serve a Notice of Right to Lien on the owner before starting work. This transfers from the claimant to the property owner the burden of proof that the owner was not aware of or did not consent to the lien claimant’s work on the property. 

This notice, however, is not required.

An Alaska Notice of Right to Lien must be served on the owner before starting work or within 15 days of the date the owner filed a Notice of Completion in order to be effective.

An Alaska Notice of Right to Lien must be served on the property owner.

If an Alaska Notice of Right to Lien is not served within the required period/s, the burden of proof that work was done on a project remains with the lien claimant.

Intent To File FAQ

An Alaska notice of intent to lien is sent before the filing of a mechanics lien becomes necessary. Although only a number of states require that this notice be sent, many construction participants send a notice of intent to lien as an uncostly way to have payments for invoices settled.

Alaska does not require sending a notice of intent to lien. However, this notice may be sent anyway to remind the property owner of any outstanding payment before a mechanics lien is necessitated.

To give the property owner enough time to settle payments, send your Alaska notice of intent to lien at least 10 days before your intended date of filing a mechanics lien.

Since a notice of intent to lien is not required in Alaska, not sending one will have no bearing on your lien rights.

Mechanics Lien FAQ

An Alaska mechanics lien is an effective tool that can help make sure you will be paid for the construction materials and/or labor you supplied. It is a legal claim that guarantees payment for contractors.

This means that if you have a valid mechanics lien on a project you worked on in Alaska and weren’t paid for your work, you have the right to enforce the lien through a lawsuit. This enforcement action can either prompt the client to settle or force the sale of the property. The proceeds of the sale will be used to settle your unpaid bill.

With a successfully filed Alaska mechanics lien, you have an interest in the improved property. When a mechanics lien is filed on the property you worked on, the property becomes collateral for uncollected payments.

According to Alaska Stat. Sec. 34.35.050,¹ the following construction participants may file a mechanics lien in the state:

  • companies or individuals who performed labor for improvement of real property 
  • union trust and trustees
  • materialmen who furnished materials to the site
  • equipment suppliers who supplied equipment to the site 
  • architect, surveyor, or engineer
  •  general contractors

All lien claimants should file a mechanics lien within 120 days of last providing labor or materials.² 

If the property owner filed a Notice of Completion, the mechanics lien should be filed within 15 days of the date of filing of the notice.

A mechanics lien should be enforced within 6 months of its filing. It is during this period that the lien is effective.

If you file an Extension Notice in the same recording office as the mechanics lien within the said period, the effectiveness of the lien is extended for another 6 months from filing.

According to Alaska Stat.34.35.070, the following pieces of information must appear on an Alaska mechanics lien form³:

  • a legal description sufficient for identification of the real property being liened
  • the name of the property owner
  • the name and address of the claimant
  • the name and address of the party who contracted with the claimant
  • a general description of the labor, materials, services, or equipment furnished and the contract price of the labor, materials, services or equipment
  • the amount due to the claimant for the labor, materials, services or equipment
  • the date the last labor, materials, services or equipment were furnished

No, you don’t need a license for the work you did in a project to file a mechanics lien.

Any lien waiver form may be used in Alaska since the state does not have legislatively designed forms for this purpose.

Alaska has no specific time requirements when it comes to releasing or canceling a mechanics lien.

Pay if paid clauses are enforceable in Alaska if they are explicit. 

Pay when paid clauses are enforceable if they serve as a condition precedent to payment.

References:

http://www.legis.state.ak.us

¹ Alaska Code Section 34-35-050

² Alaska Code Section 34-35-068

³ Alaska Code Section 34-35-070

Handle.com provides answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to contractors and others who are seeking information regarding preliminary notices, intent to file, mechanics lien, and other construction questions. These are provided for informational purposes only, and we cannot provide any kind of advice, explanation, opinion, or recommendation about possible legal rights, remedies, defenses, options, selection of forms or strategies.