Frank Lill & Son Inc.
When a bond is substituted for a mechanic's lien, a party may be required to file a writ, summons and complaint on the bond within one year of the date the mechanic's lien was recorded. In 2008, the plaintiff, Frank Lill & Son, allegedly agreed to perform mechanical work at an energy plant. Allegedly, the defendant paid the plaintiff $63 million and owes approximately $12.4 million. On June 20, 2011, the plaintiff filed a mechanic's lien, claiming that the defendant did not pay the amount owed. On June 18, 2012, a marshal received the plaintiff's writ, summons and complaint. The marshal arranged for service of process on June 26 and 27, 2012. The defendants moved to dismiss and argued that the plaintiff failed to commence suit within one year of the date that the mechanic's lien was recorded. Connecticut General Statutes §49-39 provides, "A mechanic's lien shall not continue in force for a longer period than one year after the lien has been perfected, unless the party claiming the lien commences an action to foreclose it." C.G.S. §49-37 provides that if a bond is substituted for a lien, the bond is void, unless an action is brought to recover on the bond within one year. The plaintiff objected that C.G.S. §52-593a saved its cause of action, because a bond was substituted for the mechanic's lien; process was delivered to the marshal within one year of the date that the mechanic's lien was recorded; and the marshal served process within 30 days of receipt. The court found that the plaintiff was required to place the writ, summons and complaint in the hands of the marshal, on or before June 20, 2012. The marshal received the writ, summons and complaint on June 18, 2012, and he timely served the defendants within 30 days. The court denied the defendants' motion to dismiss. "Since neither §49-39 nor 52-593a state that the savings provisions of §52-593a are inapplicable to actions to foreclose a mechanic's lien," wrote the court, "the remedial purpose of that statute favors the application of the savings provision in the present case."