more than 40 years of legal experience
302, 15252 – 32nd Avenue | Surrey, British Columbia V3Z 0R7

Builder Lien Lawyer

Construction law is complex, and throughout the life of any given project, issues with liens can arise. Having skilled legal guidance from the outset can mean the difference between a smooth path forward and unsatisfactory results, and experienced Vancouver construction lawyers can help.

Introduction to Builder Lien Lawyers in Surrey and Vancouver

Building lien lawyers help to ensure that problems associated with construction liens don’t arise in the first place. When they do, however, these legal professionals help skillfully manage associated risk and potential liability. In other words, builder lien lawyers are well acquainted with the practicalities of construction projects and are well prepared to help you navigate the applicable laws, mitigate your risk, and avoid or file construction liens – as applicable.

Understanding Construction Lien and Builders Lien Act in Surrey and Vancouver.

The Builders Lien Act supports the financial rights of those who’ve either provided materials for or worked on a construction project but have yet to be paid.

The Construction Lien Act, on the other hand, determines deadlines for the payments made by owners, contractors, and subcontractors for work done or supplies furnished. It also determines the process for filing a lien.

What Is a Construction Lien?

A construction lien is a legal claim for payment against a specific property that’s made by a general contractor or subcontractor for labour, materials, or both. Thus, they help protect the financial rights of those who work on the construction end of things.

Construction Lien Act vs Builders Lien Act

The Builders Lien Act imposes a trust on money received by contractors that helps to ensure the funds are used to finance the intended construction. The Construction Lien Act, however, helps to ensure that those involved in the actual construction are paid.

The Role of Construction Lawyers in Lien Claims in Surrey and Vancouver

Seasoned construction lawyers guide the lien claims process forward, helping to ensure that your financial rights are well protected throughout.

Experienced Construction Lawyers

Because lien claims can become very challenging very quickly, having a dedicated construction lawyer with a wealth of experience successfully handling these complex legal matters in your corner is key.

Legal Proceedings in Lien Claims

Legal proceedings in lien claims involve asserting a claim for lien in accordance with the contractual terms.

Rights and Responsibilities in Construction Projects

Both sides in construction contracts have important rights and responsibilities.

Lien Rights of Contractors and Subcontractors

Contractors have the legal right to place a lien on any property or premise they’ve worked on but haven’t been paid for.

General Contractors

General contractors and all original contractors in construction projects have lien rights.


Lien rights extend to subcontractors who are hired by others involved in the project.

Responsibilities of the Property Owner

Property owners are responsible for living up to their contractual obligations and have only 20 days to respond to service of a construction lien claim.

Navigating the Construction Industry

When it comes to the construction industry, it’s important to proceed with care.

Common Issues in Construction Projects

Some of the most common issues with construction projects include:

  • Non-payment
  • Delays
  • Issues related to payment deadlines
  • Labour issues
  • Poor planning

Trust Claims and Substantial Completion

Trust claims relate to business investments that are based on misrepresentations by the entity seeking the investments. Substantial completion refers to a project or a portion of a project being completed to the point that it’s fit for its intended use. Trust claims are often filed in relation to substantial completion.

How to File a Builders Lien

There are several important steps for filing a builders lien.

Preparing for Filing

To begin, the builders lien must be filed within a strict timeline, which is generally 45 days after the project has ended, been abandoned, or been substantially completed.

The Filing Process

The land title office employs an online application process, and the legal description of the project site must be included.

After Filing: What Next?

Once filed, the builders lien becomes a charge against the title to the property that was improved by construction.

Removing a Lien

Owners are well advised to remove any liens on their properties.

Lien Removed: The Legal Pathways

There are two primary mechanisms for removing a lien, including:

  • Paying the required amount of money to the court, which will then address the lien
  • Providing security against the lien, which resolves the lien

Consequences of Not Removing a Lien

A lien on your property can directly affect your ownership interest, which means you could lose claim to your own property.

Payment Issues in Construction

Payment issues in construction are not uncommon, and because payment is integral to the flow and final completion of the work, they are often at the heart of builders liens.

Dealing with Non-Payment

If you haven’t been paid according to contractual obligation, the first order of business is discussing the matter with the party who hasn’t paid you. Having trusted legal guidance on your side is always in your best interest. There are also alternative dispute resolution options like mediation. When these attempts fail, a builders lien remains an option.

Ensuring Timely Payment

Tips for ensuring timely payment include:

  • Having a well-considered contract in place that clearly addresses payment
  • Sending timely invoices
  • Setting shorter, manageable payment terms, such as net 15 days
  • Maintaining a polite, professional relationship with the client
  • Affording incentives for early payment

Liens are an important tool for protecting the rights of those in the construction industry. The savvy construction lawyers at Doran Law in Vancouver have an impressive track record for resolving claims involving builders liens favourably – for clients on both sides of the issue. Learn more by contacting or calling us at 604-542-9455 today.

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Office Location

Surrey Office
302, 15252 – 32nd Avenue Surrey, British Columbia V3Z 0R7
Phone: 604-542-9455
Fax: 604-542-9493

Office Hours

Monday – Friday | 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM

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