What Is Ohio Judgment Lien's Statute of Limitations?

Remove My Lien What Is Ohio Judgment Lien's Statute of Limitations?

What Is Ohio Judgment Lien's Statute of Limitations?

An  defines the period under which a court judgment directing you (the debtor) to pay a creditor the amount owed remains valid. Under Ohio law, judgment liens are usually attached to the debtor's real estate and remain valid for up to 5 years. This is a long period of time to have a court directive to make a certain payment attached to your property, especially if the lien is in the house you live in or a valuable piece of land.

If you are unable to make payments and are not in a position to sell the property to settle the debt, a judgment lien can make asset ownership quite stressful. To clear the asset, you should consider starting the process of removing the judgment lien on your property. This is quite a lengthy process which starts with first finding out if there is indeed a lien on your property, then filling out Lien Release Forms.

There is so much that goes into removing a lien on a property. Thankfully, a third-party company such as DoNotPay can help hasten the process by doing all the heavy lifting on your behalf. Read on to find out more about the

What Is a Judgment Lien?

A lien is a legal claim on a property. If you have defaulted on making a payment, the person you owe money may use the law to prompt you to make payments.  arises when someone takes you to court and wins a money judgment against you.

Judgment liens are usually non-consensual since you did not agree to have the creditor take your property if you're unable to pay. The lien only arises since you were unable to pay the money owed and the person you owe money to wants to push you to settle the debt. They will then proceed to take you to court, make their case, and if the court rules in their favor, then a judgment lien is created.

In Ohio, judgment liens are usually attached to your real estate property. Examples of assets that can be attached to a judgment lien include:

  • Your home
  • Vacant land and residential lots
  • Outbuildings
  • Decks
  • Trees
  • Sewers and fixtures

In case you are unable to pay out of pocket, the judgment creditor would be entitled to proceeds of the sale of the asset that is subject to the lien. Unfortunately, judgment liens are usually a matter of public record and anyone can see that there is a lien attached to the asset. Any attempts to sell it would mean first clearing the title or the whole process becomes difficult or impossible.

How to Remove an Ohio Judgment Lien

Paying the amount owed is the best way to remove a judgment lien. Since selling a house or any piece of real estate that has a judgment lien attached to it is almost impossible, it's best to start the process of clearing your title as soon as possible. While the process can be long and tedious, it is still very important since you will need a clear title if you are planning to refinance your mortgage or sell your home.

, follow these steps

  1. Contact the judgment lender to find out the total amount owed including court costs and collection fees. Court costs for a judgment lien are $5.00.
  2. Pay the amount in full. If this is not possible, make payment arrangements, and remember to draft the due dates and negotiated amounts in writing.
  3. Once the debt is settled as agreed, file a Release of Lien Form. You can get this from the county recorder's office.
  4. Contact a credit bureau and request to have the judgment lien removed.

Other options for removing a judgment lien include

  • Obtaining a court order to remove an illegal judgment lien. Illegal liens can arise through coercion, fraud, or any other bad faith tactics.
  • Filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy
  • Negotiating with the creditor in private to work out a settlement
  • Waiting for the Ohio judgment lien statute of limitations to run out

What Is the Ohio Judgment Lien Statute of Limitations?

The statute of limitations for judgment liens in Ohio is five years. The statute applies even if the property changes hands.

During this period, any attempts to refinance or sell the property will mean having to satisfy the debt using proceeds from the sale. Put simply, you will use any money that comes from refinancing or sale to settle the debt. If the debt is more than the equity value of the property, you will have trouble trying to sell a property that has a lien attached to it until you settle the debt.

There are situations where the holder of the judgment lien can revive the order in their favor as the five-year period is only dormant until revived.

5 YearsGeneral Rule
10 YearsJudgments in favor of the state go dormant after ten years of inactivity as opposed to the five years of inactivity for privately held judgments.
15 years
  1. O.R.C. Section 2329.66 titled Exempted Interests and Rights
  2. See O.R.C. Sections 2329.02 and .04 for hopes that increasing values and/or paydown of a prior lien will create equity that can be captured by the judgment creditor
21 YearsIf the judgment on the property was made before the amendment of the law in 2004.

Can I Sell a Property With a Judgment Lien On It?

Yes. However, finding a buyer who will agree to purchase an encumbered property might be very difficult. Most buyers require a clear title before committing their money.

Unless you are selling to a house buying company that will agree to negotiate a deal with you, your best bet lies with settling the debt, getting a court order to remove an illegal lien, declaring bankruptcy, or negotiating with the creditor to pay up, or simply waiting for the 5 years until the statute of limitations expires.

Remove a Lien With DoNotPay

If removing a judgment lien, selling a car with a lien, or removing a state tax lien from the public record is proving difficult, consider using a third-party company such as DoNotPay. You don't have to go through the long process of removing the lien when you are already so stressed by the lien that's keeping you from selling or refinancing.

DoNotPay can collect relevant information regarding your lien and start the negotiation process with the creditor that placed the lien on your behalf. We can also fill out and send a Release of Lien form to your creditor as we help kick start the process to help you get out of the lien.  Here is how this works:

  1. Search for remove my lien on DoNotPay.


  2. Start our Remove My Lien product.


  3. Answer some questions about your specific lien and let us help you craft a letter to your creditor to resolve the issue.


DoNotPay Works Across All Organizations

It only takes a few clicks. Aside from helping you remove a judgment lien on your property, DoNotPay can also help you:

  1. Find out if you have a lien against you
  2. Understand what is a lien release on a car
  3. What it means if you have a lien on your credit report
  4. Start the process of  on your real property.

What Else Can DoNotPay Do?

You can use DoNotPay in more ways than one, including

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