Knowing your lien deadline is crucial. In our office, one of the most common reasons that we are unable to file liens for our clients is that they have missed their lien filing deadline. You may have done some googling and seen both 45 and 60 days for the lien registration period in Ontario. So which deadline is correct? The short answer is that they are both right, but whether they will apply to your lien situation will depend on when your project began.
On July 1, 2018, there were a few amendments made to the Ontario Construction Lien Act. One of the more notable amendments was changing the lien filing deadline/ lien registration period from 45 days to 60 days from the last supply goods/ materials/ labor.
The 60-day deadline applies to all projects that commenced after July 1, 2018. Before assuming that the 60-day period applies to you, it is crucial to take the project as a whole into consideration, not just the work that you have provided. If the project (including the tendering process and requests for quotations) began AFTER July 1, 2018, you have 60 days from the last day of supply of originally contracted work to file your lien. If the project began BEFORE July 1, 2018 then the 45-day deadline applies.
Example: The project commenced in April of 2018, and your work specifically started September 1, 2018, and ended September 30, 2018. You would then have 45 days from September 30th of 2018 to file your lien.
*Note: If your work is still ongoing, your deadline is therefore also ongoing. If you are still on site for originally contracted work, your lien period has not yet started.
If you are unsure of when the first quotes were provided or tendering process began for your project, it is recommended that you file your lien within 45 days of your last supply. Filing within 45 days of last supply will lower the chances of your lien being disputed for being registered past lien registration period.
**Disclaimer: LIEN-PRO by Priority Credit Management (“PCM”) is strictly a lien filing agency. We are not lawyers. The information provided by PCM does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied on as such. We strongly recommend that you seek legal advice from a lawyer that practices construction law.