Under the new Civil Code §8400, “A person that provides work authorized for a work of improvement, including, but not limited to, the following persons, has a lien right under this chapter:
(a) Direct contractor.
(c) Material supplier.
(d) Equipment lessor.
(f) Design professional.”
The a-f sections are restrictive and clearly do not include numerous classes of persons who perform work at a project including inspection services, testing services, water trucks, haulers and others. But wait!
While the new definition is far less extensive but it could easily be interpreted more broadly based upon “a person that provides work authorized” then the former §3110’s definition including “Mechanics, materialmen, contractors, subcontractors, lessors of equipment, artisans, architects, registered engineers, licensed land surveyors, machinists, builders, teamsters, and draymen, and all persons and laborers of every class performing labor upon or bestowing skill or other necessary services on… ” the project.
“Person” is defined in §8032 broadly to include individuals and almost every type of legal entity and “work” is defined in §8048 to include “…labor, service, equipment or material provided to a work of improvement” which should be broad enough to include inspection and testing “services”.
This was one of the topics I spoke about at the State Bar Real Property Section Annual Retreat in Napa two weeks ago.