How To Avoid Minnesota Mechanic’s Liens


Property owners should take steps to avoid Minnesota mechanic’s liens against their property. A prudent homeowner can avoid liens by paying subcontractors directly, withholding payment where allowed by law, and requiring general contractors to provide information.

Pay Subcontractors Directly to Avoid Minnesota Mechanic’s Liens

The mechanic’s lien statute has certain provisions that protect owners against the potential for double billing on a project. An owner may avoid Minnesota mechanic’s liens by withholding from its general contractor as much of the contract price as is necessary to pay subcontractors who have filed a lien against the property. The owner is entitled to pay the subcontractors and discharge the liens and then deduct the amount paid from the contract price. Minn. Stat. § 514.07.

Withhold Payment

An owner can avoid mechanic’s liens by withholding payment from a general contractor for 120 days after the completion of the improvement, except to the extent that the contractor furnishes mechanic’s lien waivers. Minn. Stat. § 514.07.

Demand Information

Minn. Stat. § 514.07 provides: 

The owner, within 15 days after the completion of the contract, may require any person having a lien, by written request therefor, to furnish to the owner an itemized and verified account of the person’s lien claim, the amount of it, and the person’s name and address. No action or other proceeding may be commenced for the enforcement of the lien until ten days after the statement is furnished. 

Property owners with a mechanic’s lien issue should consult a Minnesota mechanic’s lien lawyer.

The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice. Each situation is unique and the application of Minnesota law depends on the specific circumstances of each case.