What is a Lis Pendens?

July 21, 2011 by The ME Law Firm

Often people will be served with a Lis Pendens in a foreclosure action (or another type of action) and they are unsure what it is exactly.  Basically, a Lis Pendens is someone claiming ownership or partial ownership in a property.  They may have a lien against the property, but more likely they are preparing to file a case or have already filed a case against you.  The claim may or may not be legitimate and it may take legal action to discern which is true.

A Lis Pendens will “cloud” the title and can hinder you from being able to purchase title insurance, transfer the property, and/or sell the property.  If a Lis Pendens has been filed, it is very important to find out if the “cloud” on the title is legitimate before you purchase the property or continue ownership of the property. To be clear, the purchase can still be bought and sold, but it should affect the value of the property.  Many actions that include a Lis Pendens are not legitimate and can be taken care of easily by an attorney.

What are some reasons a Lis Pendens may be filed? Insurances claims, a dissolution of marriage, and/or a foreclosure action are possible reasons why a Lis Pendens has been filed.  It is common for a bank to file a Lis Pendens if they feel a foreclosure may be imminent. A bank will do this to stall or prevent the home from being sold.

A Lis Pendens is a perfect example of why title insurance is so important.  Keep in mind, just because a Lis Pendens has been filed do not run screaming from your perfect home, instead give us a call at Myers & Eichelberger and we walk you through the process and research how the Lis Pendens will affect you in selling, purchasing, or owning your home.  Call us at 1-888-ME-Help-You for a free consultation.

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