SB 867 Modifies various provisions relating to real estate liens
Sponsor: Mayer
LR Number: 4149S.02I Fiscal Note: 4149-02N.ORG
Committee: General Laws
Last Action: 2/23/2010 - Hearing Conducted S General Laws Committee Journal Page:
Title: Calendar Position:
Effective Date: August 28, 2010

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Current Bill Summary

SB 867 - Only lien waivers that release rights only to the extent of payment received by the claimant in exchange for the waiver are enforceable.

Currently, architects, engineers, landscape architects, land surveyors, and corporations registered to do the work of these professions who perform work on buildings or land have a lien on the building or land to the extent of one acre. This act increases the lien to encompass three acres.

This act requires lien claimants to include the dollar amount due, and a brief general description of the type of labor, materials, or services provided in their statement. An itemization of the labor, materials, equipment, and costs is not necessary.

The petition in a lien claim shall include the names of the owners of the property subject to the lien and pray for the appointment of a disinterested person to serve as a referee to assess the lien claim.

A summons shall be personally served by the sheriff or by publication if the name or residence of the owner is unknown.

Reasonable attorneys' fees, interest and costs shall be levied against the property charged with the lien.

If the owner fails to pay the original contractor, the court shall charge reasonable attorneys' fees of any lien claimant to the owner. If the lien claimant has made a claim without just cause, the court shall charge the reasonable attorneys’ fees of the owner to the lien claimant.

When the debtor has not been served with summons, and the judgment if for the plaintiff, the interest and attorneys’ fees shall be levied against the property charged with the lien.

Currently, the court may appoint a referee to hear the case and report its findings to the court. This act requires the court to appoint a referee in all cases.

This act is similar to SB 1074 (2008), SB 267 (2009), and HB 595 (2009).