This law specifies the improper information which invalidates a mechanic’s lien and revises the law for the enforcement of mechanic’s liens.

California Civil Code § 8422
Added by S.B. 190
Effective: July, 1 2012

A mechanic’s lien is invalid if:

  • the lien was created with the intent to defraud; or
  • an innocent third party takes possession of the property and is not made aware of the lien due to the lien being deceptively deficient.

All rights under a mechanic’s lien will be forfeited if the claimant willfully includes in a mechanic’s lien any labor, services, equipment or materials not provided for the property described.

Editor’s note — Although there is a technical difference between the invalidation and forfeiture of a mechanic’s lien, there is no practical distinction.

The conditions for invalidation and forfeiture described above can only be determined after the lien has been litigated. Since the statute of limitations for recording a mechanic’s lien is quite time-restrictive, any willful inclusion of erroneous information in a mechanic’s lien, once judicially determined, will effectively forfeit the lien.