Over the last several days, I discussed mechanic's liens, and how Iowa lien law changed in 2013. I discussed the importance of registering for the Mechanics' Notice and Lien Registry (MNLR), and posting Notices of Commencement of Work for residential construction projects. The 2013 Iowa Code provides that a person or company cannot enforce a mechanic's lien if proper notice is not provided in residential or commercial constructions projects.
Courts have not decided whether a person or company can enforce a mechanic's lien under the new Iowa law if proper notice was not provided at the beginning of a project. The law is too new for courts to have decided the issue. Not many contractors know about the new law, so it is a near certainty that courts will hear the issue in the next year or two. The way it is written, you cannot enforce a mechanic's lien if you do not provide proper notice. It does not matter if you were not aware of the new law.
In order to register for the MNLR, you need to fill out this form. Then, you need to post commencement of work notices within 10 days of beginning work for residential construction, and provide written notice within 30 days of beginning work for commercial projects. Once you get a handle on the new requirements, I am confident that they will be easy practices to implement. None of the requirements are too burdensome or onerous, but you do need to follow them in order to enforce a mechanic's lien.