Posted on Friday, December 10th, 2021

real estate saleA real estate lien is a legal claim against certain real property that secures the payment of a debt. This lien may attach in various ways, either voluntarily, by virtue of the property owner pledging the real property as collateral, or involuntarily, by virtue of a creditor obtaining a judgment against the property owner and attaching said judgment against the real property. When handling a real estate transaction that involves the payment of various liens, it is wise to be represented by Orlando FL real estate attorneys affiliated with Nishad Khan P.L. to make sure that any such liens are properly addressed and to also make sure that the transaction goes smoothly.

Types of Real Estate Liens

There are various types of liens that can be affixed to real estate. One of the most common and specific types of liens is known as a judgment lien. In Florida, a judgment lien may be attached to any real estate owned by the debtor and may sometimes be attached to the debtor’s personal property as well. A judgment lien secures the unpaid amount of any money judgment that is acquired by the holder of a judgment, which is usually a creditor. This type of lien can be placed on a property following a lawsuit against the borrower, filed by the creditor. In this circumstance, the court must first rule in favor of the creditor before the lien judgment can be entered against the debtor. In Florida, a creditor may attach a judgment lien to any non-homestead real estate, that is owned by the debtor, by recording a certified copy of the judgment in the official records of any county in which the debtor owns real estate.

Other types of real estate liens that can affect the marketability of title to your real estate, and which should be addressed, include:

  • Child support liens– obligates a parent, by court order, to pay for delinquent child support that remains outstanding. A certified copy of the court order may be recorded in any county in which the parent owns non-homestead real property, and such court order will attach and become a lien against any such real property. There may be some instances in which a court order may attach to homestead property as well; however, in those circumstances, it may be wise to confer with an Orlando real estate attorney to address this type of claim.


  • Mechanic’s liens– in Florida, a mechanic’s lien may be filed against real property if a contractor, a subcontractor, or a supplier of construction materials does not receive payment after either: (i) having done work on the property, or (ii) having construction materials delivered to your property. There may even be instances where the property owner may have already paid the contractor for the work or the materials provided, but for some unknown reason, the contractor neglected to pay the subcontractor or the supplier of the construction materials. Failure to timely pay any of these parties may result in a claim of lien being filed against the property owner’s real property. Depending on how aggressive the unpaid party is, a claim of lien may sometimes result in the filing of a foreclosure against the property, which is why property owners are encouraged to meet with an Orlando real estate attorney to address any claim of lien that is filed against their property.


  • Property tax liens– When a property owner neglects to pay his or her property taxes, the applicable county or city will take the necessary steps to collect the past due balance owed. One of the measures taken is the filing of a tax lien against the real property that has the unpaid taxes. This tax lien would be a first position lien for unpaid real estate taxes, which would be enforceable against the real property.


  • IRS Federal Tax liens– When a person neglects to pay his or her tax debt, the U.S. government may file a lien against any real property that is owned by that person. In this circumstance, the federal government would, first, send the taxpayer a bill explaining how much tax debt is owed. If the property owner does not timely pay the bill, the IRS is entitled to file a Notice of Tax Lien. This Notice would be recorded in the official records of any county in which the debtor owns real estate to alert other parties of the federal tax lien. This federal tax lien would also take priority over any mortgage that may secure the affected property.


  • Homeowner’s or Condominium Association liens – A declaration which governs a homeowner’s or a condominium association may permit the applicable association to levy assessments against any property that falls under the purview of the declaration and may also permit the applicable association to also file a lien against any such property when the assessment is not timely paid.


If you have a lien against you and you own real property, it is wise to obtain a real estate attorney Orlando to see what can be done. It is important to note that if a lien is not repaid, the holder of the lien may initiate foreclosure proceedings against the property in order to recoup its moneys owed under the lien.

Tax Liens and Home Sales

The good news is that a tax lien cannot prevent you from selling your home provided that you take proper steps to address them. It may make the process of selling real property more complicated, since you will likely be obligated to pay off any amounts that remain outstanding. Additionally, it doesn’t have to be too complicated with the help of real estate law Orlando, where you can easily hire an Orlando real estate attorney.