Virginia Legislature Amends Mechanic’s Lien Statute

August 23, 2013

In July 2013, the Virginia legislature amended the Virginia mechanic’s lien statute, which may impact contractors seeking a mechanic’s lien.  Va. Code. Ann. §43-1, et. seq. Contractors seeking mechanics’ liens must now demonstrate that they are licensed to perform the work and will forfeit their right to file a mechanic’s lien for unpaid work if they are unlicensed.

Pursuant to the amendment, all claimants are now required to include their license or certificate number on the memorandum of mechanic’s lien.  However, an inaccuracy in the license or certificate number does not necessarily preclude the lien’s enforcement.  As amended, the statute provides that “[a]n inaccuracy in the memorandum as to the claimant’s license or certificate number, if any, the date such license or certificate was issued, or the date such license or certificate expires shall not bar a person from perfecting a lien if the claimant can otherwise be reasonably identified in the records of the Board for Contractors.”  Accordingly, contractors and subcontractors should obtain, and verify, their license or certificate numbers prior to filing a memorandum of mechanic’s lien.