Florida limits retainage on public projects to 5%

Dive Quick:

  • Soon after a forty- vote, Florida lawmakers have handed a invoice that will limit the amount of retainage that can be withheld from contractor payments on condition and community publicly funded initiatives to five%. If Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis indicators the legislation, the new law will go into result Oct. 1, 2020.
  • At present, contractors doing the job on general public initiatives have 10% retainage withheld from their payments right until 50% of the undertaking is finish. Then, the retainage price drops to five%. In addition to restricting how a great deal retainage general public entities are allowed to withhold, the new law will also involve normal contractors to limit retainage on subcontractor payments to five% as perfectly. 
  • The new regulation will not implement to initiatives valued at $two hundred,000 or less Florida DOT initiatives permitted underneath Florida Statutes Ch. 337 and initiatives entered into, pending acceptance or marketed by a governing administration entity on or just before Oct. 1, 2020. F.S. Ch. 337 lets the FDOT to withhold a optimum of 10% retainage if the contractor fails to start off a undertaking in a timely way or falls behind schedule on a undertaking with versatile start off and completion times.​

Dive Perception:

Retainage is the part of the agreement selling price that is withheld right until do the job is significantly finish. The condition of Florida proven the latest price of retainage in 2005 even with an Workplace of Method Coverage Assessment and Governmental Accountability research that found subcontractors have been at possibility of “waiting for an unreasonable amount of time to acquire payment” when jobsite delays unrelated to the subcontractor’s do the job occurred. 

For instance, in an excessive circumstance, an earthwork subcontractor could finish its do the job early in the undertaking schedule, but the concrete stage of the do the job is held up for good reasons unrelated to the steps of the earthwork subcontractor. The earthwork subcontractor might have to hold out right until the undertaking is 50% finish to acquire five% of retainage withheld on its agreement. 

There is nothing in the latest or new law that stops a general public entity in Florida from keeping retainage at a reduce price and such as a customized retainage release schedule in contracts or subcontracts. So there is nothing in the regulation to reduce early-do the job contractors from negotiating the accelerated payment of retainage. 

The owner have to pay back retainage and any final payments inside 30 days of significant completion, for initiatives up to $10 million, and inside 60 days of significant completion for all those valued at extra than $10 million.  

Illinois adjusted its legislation in August of past calendar year to cap retainage at 10% on most private initiatives, with a reduction to five% as soon as a contractor completes 50% of its agreement scope of do the job. This is very similar to the Illinois retainage legislation governing general public initiatives.

New Mexico prohibits retainage on general public and private initiatives, but, in accordance to the American Subcontractors Association’s “Retainage Rules in the 50 States 2018,” some proprietors and contractors in that condition have adjusted their construction agreements to consist of a line product of five% to 10% of the agreement amount for closeout do the job, in essence, finding one more way to withhold the equal of retainage.​