lien

noun
\ ˈlēn How to pronounce lien (audio) , ˈlē-ən How to pronounce lien (audio) \

Definition of lien

1 : a charge upon real or personal property for the satisfaction of some debt or duty ordinarily arising by operation of law The bank had a lien on our house.
2 : the security interest created by a mortgage the lien of a mortgage

Examples of lien in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Vue confirmed on Thursday that its first-lien lenders will take 100% equity ownership of the business. Manori Ravindran, Variety, 14 July 2022 Associations might adopt the contents of Civil Code 5730 as rules and then add any lien enforcement policies to satisfy Section 5310(7). Kelly G. Richardson, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 July 2022 Okay, so now AVT has a lien against Olivet's interests in the LLCs. Jay Adkisson, Forbes, 26 Apr. 2022 The problem is that the LLCs were not a party to the Utah proceeding, and thus have no formal notice that there is any lien on Olivet's interests. Jay Adkisson, Forbes, 26 Apr. 2022 In 2017, the companies decided to begin removing tax-lien and civil-judgment data. Annamaria Andriotis, WSJ, 18 Mar. 2022 In other words, Glaser Weil might have been able to use its lien to protect its past billings, but perhaps not any future billings going forward. Jay Adkisson, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 At the end of the day, what the creditor ends up with is a lien on that interest. Jay Adkisson, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 Matt Keyes, a spokesman for the Ohio Democratic Party, made hay out of the tax lien in a statement. Andrew J. Tobias, cleveland, 21 Oct. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lien.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of lien

1531, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lien

Anglo-French lien, loyen bond, restraint, from Latin ligamen, from ligare to bind — more at ligature

Learn More About lien

Dictionary Entries Near lien

lie like a rug

lien

lie off

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for lien

Last Updated

28 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Lien.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lien. Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for lien

lien

noun
li·​en | \ ˈlī-ən, ˈlī-ˌen How to pronounce lien (audio) \

Medical Definition of lien

: spleen

Other Words from lien

lienal \ -​ᵊl How to pronounce lien (audio) \ adjective

lien

noun
\ ˈlēn How to pronounce lien (audio) \

Legal Definition of lien

: a charge or encumbrance upon property for the satisfaction of a debt or other duty that is created by agreement of the parties or especially by operation of law specifically : a security interest created especially by a mortgage
assessment lien
: a lien that is on property benefiting from an improvement made by a municipality and that secures payment of the taxes assessed to pay for the improvement
attachment lien
: a lien acquired on property by a creditor upon levy of an attachment
carrier's lien
: a lien against freight conferring on the carrier the right to retain the property until the amount due is paid
charging lien
: a lien attaching to a judgment or recovery awarded to a plaintiff and securing payment of the plaintiff's attorney's fees and expenses

called also special lien

choate lien
: a lien that requires no further action to be made enforceable and that identifies the lienor, the property subject to the lien, and the amount of the lien
common-law lien
: a lien under common law giving a creditor (as a bailee) in possession of property the right to retain possession until payment of the amount due
equitable lien
: a lien against property that does not require possession of the property and that is available in equity to prevent unjust enrichment
factor's lien
: a lien against property held on consignment by a factor conferring the right to retain possession of the property until payment of the amount due

Note: A factor's lien is simply a security interest and, unlike a common-law lien, is enforceable even after the factor is no longer in possession of the property.

first lien
: a lien taking precedence over all other claims, charges, or encumbrances of the same general category but not necessarily over those (as taxes) imposed by government sanction
floating lien
: a lien created in a security agreement against property owned by the debtor at the time of the agreement's creation as well as property acquired after the agreement's creation
general lien
1 : a lien that is for the satisfaction of a balance due from an owner of property and that is not confined to the amount due in respect to the property itself
2 : retaining lien in this entry
inchoate lien
: a lien for which some procedure remains unfinished or some term remains undetermined
involuntary lien
: a lien that arises other than by the debtor's consent (as by operation of law)
judgment lien
: a lien acquired against the property of a debtor by a creditor upon obtaining a favorable judgment
judicial lien
: a lien obtained by a legal or equitable process (as judgment, levy, attachment, or execution)
junior lien
: a lien that is lower in priority relative to other liens
landlord's lien
: a lien against the goods and valuables of a tenant to secure payment of rent or sometimes repayment of money otherwise owed to a landlord
maritime lien
: a lien arising under maritime law against a ship or its cargo (as for services or supplies tendered or for damages caused by a collision) which may be enforced by a court-ordered seizure of the property in order to satisfy the obligation
materialman's lien \ mə-​ˈtir-​ē-​əl-​mənz-​ \
: a lien on property for materials supplied
mechanic's lien
: a lien against a building and its site to assure priority of payment for labor or services (as construction and sometimes design) or material
retaining lien
: a lien that attaches to the papers or property of a client which have come into his or her attorney's possession in the course of employment and that secures payment of the attorney's fees

called also general lien

senior lien
: a lien that is higher in priority relative to other liens
special lien
1 : an equitable lien enforceable to compel performance of an obligation (as under a divorce settlement)
2 : charging lien in this entry
specific lien
: a lien upon specific property as security for the payment of a debt or the satisfaction of some other obligation arising out of a transaction or agreement involving that property — compare general lien in this entry
statutory lien
: a lien imposed by statute
tax lien
: a statutory lien on property for taxes due giving the taxing authority a security interest in the property — compare tax sale at sale
vendor's lien
: a lien on especially real property securing payment in full of the purchase price by the buyer
voluntary lien
: a lien created (as by contract) with the consent of the debtor

History and Etymology for lien

Anglo-French, bond, obligation, literally, tie, band, from Old French, from Latin ligamen, from ligare to bind

More from Merriam-Webster on lien

Nglish: Translation of lien for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lien

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!