We here at G&R Law are used to helping our clients with liens and working with the county or other municipality in helping our clients reduce or eliminate governmental liens. In many instances, owners are unaware of notices or citations that have been levied on the property causing for substantial governmental liens that can carry hefty fees and interest being placed against the property.
What is a Governmental Lien?
A governmental lien can be from a local governmental body or the federal government. The lien can be for failure to pay tax or some other violation or code infringement. A lien is normally recorded and gives notice to anyone that the governmental body is claiming that a violation or tax is owed and a certain amount of money is due from the owner. The governmental body has the option to sue the property owner and foreclose against the property but rarely does, instead, the lien sits against the property and usually becomes an issue when the property owner wants to sell or refinance.
Do liens expire?
Depending on the type of lien and what governmental body placed the lien will determine if the lien has an expiration. For instance, liens are sometimes placed because the property owner failed to renew a pet vaccine. This type of lien may be extinguished and does not transfer with the property to the new owner.
How do you know if you have a lien?
Liens are recorded in the public registry for the county/city where the property is located. Although, depending on the type of citation or violation, further searches may have to be made, a good place to start is your local recorder’s office. In Miami-Dade, you can go to the Miami-Dade County Code Enforcement page and do a search, the link to their page is at Miami-Dade County Code Enforcement.
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