Carscallen Blog

COVID-19: Important builders' lien deadlines and notice periods remain in effect

Posted by Carscallen LLP on Apr 7, 2020 2:43:38 PM

Written by Michael Whiting, Natalie Leclerc and Susanna Garafova

Despite the fact that COVID-19 has shut down many governmental services (including temporarily closing Alberta Land Titles offices ("LT") to the general public), important builders' lien registration and filing deadlines still remain in effect.

Specifically, a builders' lien must be registered at LT within 45 days after the work is completed or the materials supplied. Builders’ liens for an oil or gas well, or an oil or gas well site, must be registered within 90 days.  In certain circumstances, the actual triggering event for the start of the 45 or 90 day period can be challenging to identify, and we recommend any party seeking to register a lien consult with an experienced construction law lawyer for advice

Although the LT offices are temporarily closed, lien registrations are still being processed through a drop off box for completed documents.  

While it is always advisable to commence the process early for registering a builders' lien, and not to wait until the end of the lien period, it is arguably even more important now in order to avoid the additional challenges and possible delays presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

It is also important to note that filing deadlines relating to commencement documents have not been suspended in Alberta at this time.

  • If you have registered a builders' lien within the last 180 days you must still file a Statement of Claim and register a certificate of lis pendens in support of your builders' lien claim within 180 days from the date it was registered.[1]
  • Notice of claim deadlines related to Public Works Claims also remain in effect at this time.[2]  

Businesses should also be mindful of the notice periods set out in applicable commercial agreements, bonds, and insurance contracts.

carscallen LLp's construction law expertise 

We understand that the rapid emergence of COVID-19 means that many businesses are dealing with a myriad of legal issues. Please contact us if you have any legal questions about your legal obligations in connection with COVID-19, or any other construction law matters. Our lawyers routinely work remotely and will continue to do so during this time. We remain available to provide legal advice and guidance to clients for all issues that may arise during the pandemic.

For more updates related to COVID-19, please visit our resources page and follow us on LinkedIn.

Visit COVID-19 Page

As this is an ongoing situation of a global nature, the information provided herein is current as of the publishing date of this blog.

*This update is intended for general information only on the subject matter and is not to be taken as legal advice.

[1]  Builders' Lien Act, RSA 2000, c B-7, s. 43.

[2] Public Works Act, RSA 2000, c P-46, s. 14.

Topics: Covid-19, Construction Law

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