Iowa
Bond or Lien Claim-Private Work

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Note: This information is limited in scope and applies only to this document. Please see the general information, all forms memo, and the general information memo for this type of document, for additional information.

Document Title: Mechanic’s Lien

Scope: State of Iowa, Private Works.

Time Constraints: If you are a contractor or you supplied materials only to a sub-contractor who furnishes materials only, you must have served the required Preliminary Notice (Private Works) waiting the statutory time frame or you cannot file a lien claim. (see Iowa Preliminary Notice, Private Works, memo for more information).

Lien Statement of Account: You must file your Mechanic’s Lien with the county recorder's (district court office in some locations) office within 90 days, inclusive, after the last furnishing of labor, materials or service. You must also serve a copy by certified mail of the Lien Statement of Account upon the owner and the prime contractor.

Service on the owner in a timely fashion is very important-the lien will be effective only for the unpaid balance due from the owner to the contractor at the time of the service of the notice.

However, if your lien is to be against railroad property, and you are a sub-contractor, you have 90 days from the last day of the month in which you furnished to file your claim.

Perfection: To perfect your mechanic's lien, you must file suit against the relevant parties to foreclose the lien and enforce any bond claim within 2 years of the 90th day from the date of last furnishing.

Lien Bond: A mechanic's lien is waived by accepting security bond before or during work on the project. The acceptance after completion of work of the security bond will waive the lien only if such new security is part of an express written agreement between the parties to waive said lien.

The usual remedy is to file to enforce all claims in one suit (see below, Procedures). In any case, we strongly recommend that your attorney handle the enforcement actions to perfect you lien claims.

Information Requirements: Program information and information for Exhibits A-D, any additional costs as to legal fees, court costs and interest charges (don't pass these up. Estimate if necessary. In the case of Bond Claims, the lenders or sureties will reserve ONLY the amount for which you make claim), and the county of the state where the recording will be made.

Form Types: Mechanic’s Lien, Exhibit's A-D, if needed and the Recorder's Letter.

Procedures: Within the statutory time limits, prepare your documents using the required information. If you served the owner and prime contractor with a Preliminary Notice, you must also include a copy of the signed certified notice. File your lien claim, and send copies by certified mail immediately to the owner (a copy for the prime contractor is also in order) and a copy to the sureties, if known. A this point you are ready to file suit to enforce all of your claims in one action.

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