Filing Liens to Obtain Payment on Public and Private Construction Projects

Filing Liens to Obtain Payment on Public and Private Construction Projects

In Louisiana, the Private Works Act and the Public Works Act grant provisions that help workers obtain payment for services rendered on construction projects. It allows them to file liens on the property where the work was performed (or on the payment bond in public construction projects), which can then be sold to pay them if the owner or contractor of the project fails to provide payment. Workers have a right to receive compensation for services performed and materials provided in private and public construction projects. Thus, the Louisiana legislation allows construction workers, subcontractors, and others to receive what they are owed.

Filing a Lien Under the Louisiana Private Works Act

Under the Louisiana Private Works Act, you may file a lien against an owner or contractor of a private construction project. The Act gives workers the right to hold the owner or contractor personally liable for monies owed and to file a lien or privilege against the piece of property the work was conducted on. This helps workers secure a claim and pursue the amount of compensation they are owed.

The following may file a lien under the Louisiana Private Works Act:

  • Laborers
  • Subcontractors
  • Consultants
  • Material suppliers
  • Lessors
  • General contractors

The Louisiana Private Works Act grants provisions to workers in private construction projects. These are projects that are run by individual companies or persons, not by federal or government agencies. Furthermore, the Louisiana Private Works Act is not applicable to the construction of a railroad, or to any public work projects. By filing a lien, workers may receive payment for the cost of delivery of movables (certain properties or possessions), any amount of interest owed, and fees for filing the claim.

If the total amount that is reasonably estimated for the construction project is greater than $25,000, a general contractor will not be able to file a lien. However, by filing a notice of contract, a general contractor may still be able to pursue a claim on the property. The notice of contract must be signed by the owner and the contractor and must stipulate the expected price of the work, when payments are to be made, and what type of work will be done.

Filing a Lien Under the Louisiana Public Works Act

The Louisiana Public Works Act lets workers and material suppliers seek payment for labor and materials used on public work projects. Laborers cannot place a lien on public property. Thus, a different claim must be made in order to receive payment. Laborers can place a claim against the unexpended (unspent) funds that are provided for the public work project.

Furthermore, if the value of the project is greater than $25,000, contractors must provide a bond to workers. The bond must be solvent, good, and have a sufficient sum of at least half the amount of the total project’s value. The laborers can file a lien on a bond to receive payment for materials provided and services rendered.

Under the Louisiana Public Works Act, several parties may be entitled to a claim:

  • Architects
  • Subcontractors
  • Professional sub-consultants
  • Engineers
  • Consulting engineers
  • Lessors of movables
  • Certified surveyors

A claim may be brought by anyone who is owed monies for labor or materials provided throughout the process of a public work construction project. This can involve furnishing, transporting, and delivering materials such as oil, electricity, gas, and other supplies. Those who lease out equipment or machines for repair, construction, and alteration can also file a claim against the bond provided by the contractor.

Experienced Representation for Clients Facing Construction Litigation

If you work for a private or public construction works project and have not received what you are owed, Scott Vicknair, LLC can help. The Louisiana Public Works Act and Private Works Act gives legal provisions to help laborers obtain the compensation they deserve. Our New Orleans construction litigation attorneys can help you file the paperwork, build your case, and represent you tenaciously against the owner or contractor involved in the case.

Contact our firm today to discuss your situation with one of our knowledgeable legal advocates. Call us today to set up your initial consultation now!