I ran across a blog post this afternoon that clearly summarized an important point:
There is a misconception that once a lien is filed or recorded against a property, it remains there indefinitely, similar to a deed or mortgage. (Refinance PA Mortgage Blog).
Very well put. The point is absolutely true. Many, many folks in the construction industry think that mechanic liens will impair a property until the lien is paid. This is not the case.
In some states – like in California – the mechanic lien is only valid for 90 days after its registration. Less than three months after you file your California lien, then, the lien dissipates and is no longer affecting the property.
The fact that the mechanic lien will expire does not defeat the purpose of the lien. That’s because before the lien expires, lien claimants can file a lawsuit to “foreclose” on the lien. When this suit is filed, the lien stays put while the merits of the foreclosure action is determined.
We’ve written about this on two previous occasions, and I recommend you read these articles: