The Lis Pendens: Form, Definition, and Effect:

Listen Now
Voiced by Amazon Polly

The Lis Pendens: Form, Definition, and Effect: 

Many real estate agents with clients going through the foreclosure process have come across a document known as a Lis Pendens. But what exactly is a lis pendens? What does lis pendensit do? Does it adversely affect a pending transaction or sale?

In essence, a lis pendens translates to “pending litigation.” The lis pendens, when recorded in the public records where the property lies, serves as notice to the world at large that the particular property is facing legal action surrounding or otherwise encompassing the subject property. Typically, you will encounter a lis pendens in regards to foreclosure properties, properties engaged in partition or eminent domain proceedings, or in other actions which affect the title to a particular parcel.

The purpose of the lis pendens is to protect the interests of unidentified third-parties from being bound by an adverse judgment otherwise affecting the title to the property. For instance, suppose Owner A files suit against Owner B for partition (an action to force the sale or division of real estate) as a result of a dispute between Owners A and B. Owner B lists his 50% interest in the property for sale around this time. Potential Purchaser C will notice the lis pendens in a title search and thereby have actual notice that the property is subject to litigation.  In the event Potential Purchaser C takes title to the property during the pendency of the Partition action, C’s interest will be taken subject to the judgment rendered in lawsuit. Which means, C could be forced to sell his newly acquired interest, or risk losing a portion of the property by division.

Therefore, under Florida Law, a party acquiring an interest in a property subject to a lis pendens takes that property subject to the interests of the party filing the lis pendens, as determined by court order in that particular lawsuit.

We recommend that a title search be performed prior to or immediately after entering into a contract for sale so that a buyer knows the “state’ of the property.  Not only will the search reveal a lis pendens but also show other judgments, liens and encumbrances on the property.

Be cautious when proceeding to acquire an interest in a property subject to a pending court action. If you are interested in acquiring such a property, contact the Law Offices of Barry L. Miller for a consultation at 407-423-1700 or via email at info@BarryMillerLaw.com so we may review the circumstances and legal repercussions of the purchase.

Background
Your Closing Partner

We Bring Peace Of Mind To The Closing Table.

Keep Up To Date

TCA News Hub

Altamonte Springs

1150 Douglas Ave., Ste. 1080
Altamonte Springs, FL 32714
Get Directions

Celebration

741 Front St., Ste. 130
Celebration, FL 34747
Get Directions

Lakeland

1715 S. Florida Ave.
Lakeland, FL 33803
Get Directions

Merritt Island

135 S. Courtenay Pkwy.
Merritt Island, FL 32952
Get Directions

Ocoee

356 Moore Rd.
Ocoee, FL 34761
Get Directions

Orlando

11 N. Summerlin Ave., Ste. 100
Orlando, FL 32801
Get Directions

Winter Park

1030 W. Canton Ave., Ste. 216
Winter Park, FL 32789
Get Directions

Place An Order