Construction Frequently
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Preliminary Notice FAQ

A Mississippi preliminary notice 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.

Prime contractors are to provide a list of subcontractors and suppliers at the start of a project if the property owner asks for it. 

Subcontractors, suppliers and laborers without a contract with the property owner or general contractor are required to send a preliminary notice to the general contractor or property owner within 30 days of first providing labor, services or materials.⁴

Failing to provide a Mississippi preliminary notice when required is fatal to the lien.

Intent To File FAQ

A Mississippi 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.

Prime contractors are not required to send a notice of intent to lien in Mississippi. 

All parties who are working on single-family residential project and do not have a direct contract with the property owner must send a notice of intent to lien.

Send your Mississippi notice of intent to lien to the property owner at least 10 days before filing a mechanics lien.

Not sending a Mississippi notice of intent to lien when required is fatal to the lien.

Mechanics Lien FAQ

A Mississippi mechanics lien is an effective tool that helps 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 Mississippi 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 valid Mississippi 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.

Contractors, subcontractors, material suppliers and land surveyors have lien rights in Mississippi. Design professionals such as engineers and architects are covered by lien rights too.¹ 

 

Only first- and second-tier subcontractors, however, may file a mechanics lien.

A construction participant must file a Mississippi mechanics lien, called claim of lien, within 90 days of last providing labor, services or materials.²

After filing a Mississippi mechanics lien, a claimant has 180 days to enforce it. The lien is valid during this period.³ 

However, this may be shortened to just 60 days if the property owner or prime contractor records a notice of contest of lien and sends a copy of it to the claimant.

A Mississippi mechanics lien form should contain the following pieces of information:

 

  • The claimant’s name
  • The amount of the claim
  • The property owner’s identity
  • A description of the property against which the claim is being filed
  • The date the claim became due (which is the same date the claimant last provided labor, services or materials)
  • A statement on the lien’s expiration, pursuant to the Mississippi mechanics lien law’s Section 85-7-421(1)
  • A notice to the property owner stating he or she has the right to contest the lien

Yes, you need to have a license for the work or materials you provided in a project in order to be eligible to file a mechanics lien in Mississippi.

Mississippi has legislatively designed lien waiver forms that claimants are required to use.

The state does not allow contractors and suppliers to waive their lien rights prior to starting work.

Pay if paid clauses are enforceable in Mississippi as long as they are unambiguous and clearly state that the risk of payment is shifted to the subcontractor.

Pay when paid clauses are enforceable.

References:

http://www.legislature.ms.gov

Mississippi’s Construction Lien Law

¹ Mississippi Code Section 85-7-403

² Mississippi Code Section 85-7-405

³ Mississippi Code Section 85-7-405

Mississippi Code Section 85-7-407

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.

Mississippi documents

Mechanics Lien

Still chasing payments on a construction project? File a Mechanics Lien on the project to recoup unpaid labor and materials.