How Do I Find Out if I Have a Lien Against Me?
A lien is a legal right to retain/lawfully possess the assets of another individual. It can be used as a form of security by a creditor against a debtor or to enforce a particular legal obligation, such as alimony payments, child support provision, etc. It ensures that the creditor has the right to the borrower's property which satisfies the debt if the borrower fails to meet their legal and/or financial obligations. There are two types of liens:
- Consensual: Contractual obligations between the concerned parties create these, for example, a car lien or a lien on a house when obtaining a business loan.
- Non-consensual: These arise from statutory or common law: tax lien.
Ideally, you should seek to know . This is because a lien against you, for example, a lien on your property, can get into your way when trying to secure a mortgage refinance or getting a loan. It's also generally essential to have your financial information up to date. There are many ways to find out if you have a lien against you, but by enlisting DoNotPay, you can benefit from a fast, easy and convenient way of getting this information.
Why is There a Lien Against Me?
Liens can be filed for a multitude of reasons. Below, we'll cover some of the most common:
|You’re Late on Loan Payments (Mortgage, Car, Etc.)||If you're late on your loan payments, the bank/creditor may execute the lien by seizing the property in question and selling it to repay the loan.|
|You Owe Taxes to the IRS||Although it can be legitimate, there are many cases the IRS has put a lien on a property wrongly, so you should check whether they say you owe them when you really don't and pursue how to remove this tax lien. It's important to know that a tax lien isn't dischargeable even if you file for bankruptcy.|
|You Owe Child Support or Spousal Alimony||If you're behind on your child support or alimony payments, a court may put a lien on your property to force you to make those payments. Similar to the tax lien, this lien isn't dischargeable if you file for bankruptcy.|
|You Owe Money to a Contractor||If you had a contractor render services at your house or on your car and didn't compensate for that work, your contractor might place a mechanic's lien on whatever property was repaired to secure payment.|
How Do You Know if There's a Lien Against You?
Liens are filed against a property you own, not an individual. Here's how you can :
- In the US, liens are almost always public records, maintained as a part of the property record. The state often maintains existing liens on vehicles, while real estate is generally at the county level. A quick visit to your county/state offices to see if there are any financing statements on file can tell you if there's a lien against you.
- Alternatively, visit your local courthouse and check their records.
- You can also obtain a credit report or apply for credit. In the letter, the company may let you know if they deny you and will tell you why.
How to Get Rid of a Lien Filed Against You
There are various ways to remove a lien, ensuring a win-win situation for both the debtor and creditor. Here's how:
- Satisfy your debt. You can get rid of a lien on any of your assets by paying off your loan/debt in full. Be sure to file a release of lien form to remove the lien from your property effectively.
- If you don't have the total amount, you could opt to negotiate a repayment plan that extends the period over which you need to have settled your debt.
- You could also opt to negotiate a debt reduction of the amount you owe, like negotiating an extended repayment plan. Negotiating a debt reduction is an attractive option for creditors. It can be less expensive than repossession and resale.
- If the lien is based on coercion, duress, fraud, or other conditions that make it invalid, you have the option to contest the lien in court. Although this process may be lengthy and time-consuming, it's imperative as it could save you money on a more expensive lien resolution.
- File for Chapter seven bankruptcy. This may be a temporary solution as it can only be enforced for a limited time. Note: This only applies to some liens.
- Wait for the Statute of Limitations on your debt to run out: Every state has its law limiting how long a creditor has to file a suit once the debtor defaults. At the expiration of this time, the lien can be viewed as unenforceable and therefore removed.
Remove Liens Against You With the Help of DoNotPay
Once you establish that you have a lien against you, DIY methods are too lengthy and time-consuming. DoNotPay can get all the relevant information about your lien situation and send a letter to your creditor requesting a renegotiation of your debt based on what best suits you. Additionally, we can send out a Release of Lien form to your creditor to sign, allowing you to get the lien off your record once you renegotiate your debt. Here's how to remove a lien filed against you with the help of DoNotPay:
- Search for remove my lien on DoNotPay.
- Start our Remove My Lien product.
- Answer some questions about your specific lien and let us help you craft a letter to your creditor to resolve the issue.
That's it! DoNotPay will send the letter to your creditor, and you should hear back from them in two weeks.
DoNotPay Works Across All Entities With a Simple Click of a Button
DoNotPay is a multi-faced platform that will not only help you find out but also how to get rid of the lien. It will also lend you assistance if you want to sell a property with a lien, get information about a tax lien on a credit report, how to remove a state tax lien from public record, etc.
Apart from information related to a lien on your property, DoNotPay has other features you could benefit from, including:
- Seeking legal assistance in a small claims court
- Skipping the waiting line to speak to customer service
- How to increase your credit limit
- Hacks to obtain a clean credit report
- How to reduce property taxes
with DoNotPay today to learn more about these features and many others.