Jennifer Johnson answers the question: “I’m a Contractor and Haven’t Been Paid.” All About Lien Rights in Illinois. Illinois Mechanics Lien Act. Construction Liens. Zanck, Coen, Wright & Saladin PC is a McHenry County Law Firm
Jennifer J: “Hi, my name is Jennifer Johnson and I’m a partner here at Zanck, Coen, Wright and Saladin. I’ve been with the firm since 2005. I concentrate my area of practice in landlord/tenant law, real estate, general civil litigation, construction litigation, and I also handle some traffic offenses.
One other thing to think about in the State of Illinois, if you’re a contractor and you haven’t been paid for work, whether you’re a general contractor or you’re a subcontractor or you’re a material supplier, whatever the case may be, you do have lien rights in Illinois.
There’s a statute called the Illinois Mechanics Lien Act. It’s actually a construction lien, it’s not an actual mechanics lien as the name of the statute suggests. Keep in mind that if you’re not paid by either a property owner or by a general contractor or whatever the case may be, you do have lien rights to be able to record a lien against the property to preserve whatever monies that you may be owed by whatever party owes you the money.
The Illinois Mechanics Lien Act is very specific, it’s very specialized, it’s a very important area for you to have an attorney to help you navigate the process. There are certain notices that have to be done. The notices depend on whether you’re a contractor, whether you’re a subcontractor, whether it’s an owner occupied single family home, whether it’s a vacant lot, or whatever the case may be. The notices that are required have certain timeframes that must be followed. Also, they have certain contents that are required of the notice by its statute. If something is done and there’s a missed step on any of the notices or for the contents of the lien, then that could be cause for dismissal of the lien.
The beauty of the Illinois Mechanics Lien Act is that if everything is done correctly and the lien is recorded and the property is either foreclosed on by a bank or there’s a lawsuit filed to foreclose the lien, you actually stand as a contractor or a subcontractor with a couple of caveats. Generally speaking, you stand in the shoes of the owner and could stand to take ownership of that property to recoup the funds that you’re owed, under your contract for the work that was performed for which you weren’t paid.
If you do have an issue with not being paid on a construction project, landscaping, carpentry work, material supplier, plumbing, electrical work, etc., make sure you give us a call so we can help you navigate through the process, and assist you in preparing the notices and the liens as you require for your particular situation.”
Jennifer L. Johnson can be reached at (815) 459-8800 ext 652 and [email protected]
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