Once it comes time to sell your real estate, you might be surprised to find that there’s a lien attached to it. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including when fees tied to something like a liquor license go unpaid for a significant period of time. Even though your actions that led to the attachment of a lien may have been unintentional, the impact the lien can have on your property can be significant, as it might make it hard to find a buyer willing to take on the property while the lien is still attached.
How do you remove a lien from your property?
If you want to sell your real estate as quickly as possible, you need to focus on removing the lien that’s attached to it now. In most instances, you’re simply going to have to pay the debt that you owe in order to have the lien removed. However, sometimes the lien that has been placed on your property is invalid.
Under these circumstances, you may need to take legal action to have a court find that the lien has been fraudulently placed against your property. To support that finding, you’ll need to present evidence that demonstrates that the lien is unjustified.
What if the lien isn’t removed after paying your debt?
If this happens, your first stop is to contact the creditor to remind them that the debt has been paid and that the lien should be removed. Your demand that the lien be released should be formalized in writing and why the lien should be removed should be clearly explained.
At that point, the creditor may remove the lien entirely, partially release the lien, or completely ignore you. If the lien isn’t removed in full, you’ll need to consider taking legal action to show that the lien remains attached only through bad faith on the creditor’s part.
Are there other options?
If you can’t pay your debt in full or you simply want to avoid that option, you can explore other methods of resolution. Bankruptcy, for example, may remove your liens and free you from some of your debt obligations. It might also provide you with the fresh financial start that you need.
You might also be able to negotiate with the creditor outside of the bounds of formal legal action. By doing so, you may be able to get the lien removed without paying your debt obligation in full. Although you might be able to conduct this negotiation on your own, it might be helpful to put the matter through mediation or arbitration to ensure that a fair outcome is reached.
Another option is to simply let the statute of limitations run out. If the creditor doesn’t act on the lien within the period of time allowed by the statute, it’s no longer enforceable. Of course, this is a risky way to address the matter, and it doesn’t free you to sell the property as you might hope.
Find the outcome that’s best for you
Dealing with complicated real estate issues like those pertaining to liens can be confusing and frustrating. They can also threaten to deprive you of significant amounts of money.
That’s why it’s critical that you know how to competently handle your real estate law challenges. We know that can be a daunting thing to think about, but you don’t need to worry so much if you have a skilled legal professional by your side.
With that in mind, if you’d like another set of eyes on your case, you might want to consider reaching out to a real estate law team that knows how to put your interests first.