Can I be served a mechanic’s lien for a “cancellation” fee that was never disclosed and no contracts were involved?

We wanted advice from a bee exterminator on what we should do about bees in our yard. My wife called a local guy. When she asked him how much it would cost, he danced around and said “it depends”. When she gave me the details, I immediately called back to cancel – this guy obviously was going to gouge us. He told me he had already “loaded the truck” and hired someone to come over with him; therefore, I now owed him $100. A week later I get an unnotarized mechanics lien from him for $620!!! This guy never left his business and even admitted he had other jobs that day. Is this legal!?

Asked on July 9, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Texas


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

No, obviously it is not.  He performed no work on the property or your behalf that would allow him to file such a lien.  And I think that he knows it becuase if he signs the papers before a notary "verifying" that the work was done then he would be committing fraud and possibly perjury.  I might speak with a lawyer about a flat fee for sending a letter regarding the "bill."  It will be worth it in the end should you have to hire an attorney to fight the lien.  Good luck.

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