Litigation Privilege Saves the Day for Mechanic’s Liens

Frightened man with liferaft sinking in water asking for help

Attorneys Stephen M. Tye and Lawrence S. Zucker II discuss RGC Gaslamp v. Ehmcke Sheet Metal Co.

November 23, 2020
Stephen M. Tye & Lawrence S. Zucker II - Haight Brown & Bonesteel

In RGC Gaslamp v. Ehmcke Sheet Metal Co., the Fourth Appellate District held that a trial court properly granted an anti-SLAPP motion because the recording of a mechanic’s lien is protected by the litigation privilege.

In RGC Gaslamp, subcontractor Ehmcke Sheet Metal Company (“Ehmcke”) recorded a mechanic’s lien to recoup payment due for sheet metal fabrication and installation done at a luxury hotel project in downtown San Diego. Project owner RGC Gaslamp, LLC (“RGC”) recorded a release bond for the lien. Thereafter, Ehmcke recorded three successive mechanic’s liens identical to the first, prompting RGC to sue it for quiet title, slander of title, and declaratory and injunctive relief. After retaining California counsel, Ehmcke then released its liens and advised it did not intend to record any more. Ehmcke then filed a special motion to strike under the anti-SLAPP statute (Code Civ. Proc. § 425.16.) which was granted.

Reprinted courtesy of Stephen M. Tye, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP and Lawrence S. Zucker II, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP

Mr. Tye may be contacted at stye@hbblaw.com
Mr. Zucker may be contacted at lzucker@hbblaw.com



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