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

Answers:

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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