On July 29th, 2015, Public Act 99–0178 became law, allowing use of an Illinois Mechanics Lien Release bond to remove encumberances arising from improvement work on real property or for monies due to a general contractor. The Illinois Mechanic’s Lien Act has been amended to include, an owner, lien claimant or other person having an interest in the property against which a mechanics’ lien is asserted may petition the Circuit Court in the jurisdiction in which the lien is filed to “bond over” the lien. The surety bond must be “eligible” in order to be accepted. The bond must specifically state that the principal and surety submit to the jurisdiction of the circuit court of the county where the property being improved is located and that a final non-appealable judgment or decree entered in a proceeding in favor of the lien claimant based on the lien claim that is the subject of an eligible surety bond shall constitute a judgment against the principal and surety of the bond for the amount found due to the lien claimant, including interest and attorney’s fees, limited to the full amount of the Illinois mechanics lien release bond.

The surety bond must be in continuous, non-cancelable form, remaining in effect until the complete satisfaction of the adjudicated amount due under the lien claim or the payment of the full amount of the bond or to a final determination, and the expiration of all appeal periods, that the lien claim is invalid, void, has been released by the lien claimant, or the time to enforce the lien claim has expired without the required action by the lien claimant. The penal sum of the bond must be in an amount equal to 175% of the amount of the lien claim and issued by a surety company that has a certificate of authority from the Department of Insurance specifically authorizing the company to execute surety bonds. The surety company must have a current financial strength rating of not less than A with no rating modifier, an outlook which is either positive or stable, and a financial size category of not less than IX, as rated by A.M. Best. Additionally, if property affected by the lien is in a judicial circuit that has its own list of approved surety companies, then the surety bond must be issued by a surety company specifically authorized to issue surety bonds for that circuit court.

Illinois surety leaderSurety One, Inc. is THE most agile and service-oriented underwriter of judicial bonds in the U.S. Our experience in manuscripting bond forms, same day underwriting, immediate bond execution and delivery are unmatched. NO ONE has the underwriting authorities that we do.  Visit https://suretyone.com, call (800) 373-2804, or email Underwriting@SuretyOne.com for application materials and assistance with your Illinois mechanics lien release bond need.

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