Contractor reading New Florida Lien Laws in his shop

Florida’s Updated Construction Lien Laws: A Simplified Guide

Hello and welcome back to Lien On Me! Today, we’re diving into Florida’s latest construction lien law changes that took effect on October 1, 2023. We’ll break down these changes in a way that’s easy to understand, removing all the legal jargon. Let’s get into it!

1. Clear Communication on Payment Issues

Now, if you’re owed money on a construction project, you must inform not only the contractor but also their insurance provider (if they have one). Plus, if your payment dispute goes to arbitration, the arbitrator can decide who should pay the legal fees.

2. Who’s a Contractor?

The definition of a contractor has expanded. It now includes those licensed individuals who are managing the construction process, including scheduling and cost control, or those providing a full range of planning and construction services.

3. Termination Notice Process

For project owners, there’s a new step before ending a project. They need to inform everyone directly contracted with them or those who have already notified the owner about their involvement before officially ending the project.

4. Building Permit Rules

If your project is worth more than $5,000 (up from the previous $2,500), you’ll need to submit a specific project commencement notice to the permit authority before the first inspection.

5. Legal Fees in Payment Disputes

In disputes over payment, arbitrators now have the power to decide on and award legal fees.

6. Official Lien Releases

When releasing a construction lien, it must now include a notarized signature and specific record details.

7. Timelines for Nonpayment Notices

Those renting equipment for a project need to be aware of a new 90-day limit to raise a nonpayment issue after the equipment was last used.

8. Increased Security for Lien Claims

The financial guarantee required for transferring a lien claim has been raised.

9. Legal Fees for Lien Enforcement

In cases where you’re enforcing a lien, the new law allows for the recovery of legal fees.

These changes aim to streamline processes and ensure fairness in the construction industry. Stay informed and prepared with these updates!

That’s all for now! Keep following Lien On Me for more updates and insights into the world of construction liens. Stay safe and informed!

Because nobody should feel alone in the fight for fair payment.

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