On August 5, 2020, Governor Kemp signed Senate Bill 315 into law, which amends the Georgia statutory lien waiver form and clarifies that a lien waiver will only waive lien and bond rights – not substantive rights to payment under a construction contract. This change is in response to the 2019 case ALA Construction Services, LLC v. Controlled Access, Inc. which received immediate criticism from the construction industry.
Because this new law was signed after July 1, it will go into effect on January 1, 2021, and lien waivers signed in the year 2020 will continue to be interpreted under the old rule. Contractors at all levels should continue to use previous lien waiver forms for the remainder of the year, and switch to the new form for all projects in Georgia on January 1, 2021.
Please reach out if you have any questions about how this change will impact your Georgia project.