Is It average to Lien?

Is It average to Lien?




In its simplest form, a lien under Florida law is a signal to the world that the lienholder has an interest in some real or personal character. The most shared are construction liens recorded by materialmen, as Florida law defines that term. Materialmen are generally considered people who enhance character and aren’t fully paid. In Florida, judgments can also act as liens in addition as Uniform Commercial Code Financing Statements (UCC-1s), if they are properly recorded and filed in the right places.

So what if a party has a legal right to record a lien, should it do so? Like many areas of the law, it depends on the particular situation. However, liens provide for lawful methods of seizing character and give a party special rights greater than those of other claimants. For example, a properly recorded and priority lien can give a party the ability to prevent another from being able to seize assets unprotected to the lien and can ultimately protect that a party’s ability to satisfy a judgment in its favor.

So how does a party know if it has a legal right to record a lien? A party may have a right to a lien if it has participated in improving real character and has not been fully paid. A party may also have a right to a lien if it loaned money where the agreement provided for the debt to be secured. These are just some examples of shared situations where lien rights arise. They are not exclusive and the best action to take before recording a lien is to consult with qualified legal counsel.

Be aware, Florida’s lien laws are very strict and failure to properly and timely comply with their requirements can expose a party to meaningful liability. This is not the kind of legal matter a party should attempt without counsel to save money because it can consequence in substantial liability later. Improper liens or those deemed fraudulent by a Court can consequence in expensive lawsuits against the lienor for claims, such as quiet title and slander of title, that can expose the lienor to meaningful liability, including attorneys’ fees and punitive damages.

If you think you have a need or a right to record a lien or think that some party has wrongfully liened your character, you should first consult with an attorney that understands and has experience in real estate, construction, or real character litigation. Attorneys who are Board Certified in Real Estate, Construction Law, and Business Litigation are recognized by the Florida Bar, Judges, and their peers as experts in this field. You can acquire a listing of Board Certified attorneys from the Florida Bar’s website at http://www.flabar.org.




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