The Lien Statute of Limitations Law for Ohio Explained

What is a lien

A lien is a legal claim that a creditor has on a property or asset of a debtor. The legal claim may be against a property or asset that is used as collateral to pay or encourage recovery of the debt or obligation. The creditor, or lienholder, has a right to hold or sell the property or asset as collateral for an outstanding debt or obligation that is owed to them by the debtor. Lienholders may include banks, mortgage lenders, contractors, or other entities that have provided goods or services and have not been fully paid. Another example of a lienholder is an insurance company. Sometimes, insurance companies will retain a law firm to collect on these liens (i.e., Keis George LLP). Some common types of liens that we work in subrogation files include the following:

  • Mortgage lien: A lien placed on a property by a mortgage lender as collateral for a home loan.
  • Mechanic’s lien: A lien placed on a property by a contractor or subcontractor who has not been paid for work done on the property.
  • Judgment lien: A lien placed on a property as a result of a court judgment against the property owner.

Lienholders have the right to take legal action to enforce their liens and collect the debt owed to them. If the debt is not paid, the lienholder may be able to seize or sell the property or asset to satisfy the debt.

Lien Statute of Limitations Law Explained

The Statute of Limitations refers to the period of time within which a lienholder may file a claim against a property or asset. The statute of limitations for a lien is the period of time that the lienholder has to file a claim against the property or asset. The statute of limitations varies by state and by the type of lien but typically ranges from a few months to several years.

Once the statute of limitations has expired, the lienholder loses the right to file a claim against the property or asset, unless a judgment was previously rendered. However, it is important to note that the expiration of the statute of limitations does not necessarily mean that the lien is no longer valid. The lien may remain in place until the debt is satisfied, but the lienholder may no longer have the right to take legal action to enforce the lien.

The lien law in Ohio is governed by Ohio Revised Code 2329.66, which establishes the rights and obligations of lienholders and property owners concerning liens placed on real property. The Ohio lien law also provides for a notice of commencement, which must be filed by the owner of the real property before any work begins on the property. This notice provides information about the project, including the names and addresses of the property owner, contractor, and lender, and the location and legal description of the property.

The lien law in Ohio includes specific requirements for filing and enforcing liens, including deadlines for filing, procedures for providing notice, and requirements for releasing or discharging a lien. 

Judgment Lien

We know that Ohio Revised Code 2329.66 establishes the rights and obligations of lienholders. ORC 2329.66 is meant to help creditors recover their monies when someone owes them money and can’t pay it back. To better understand ORC 2329.66, consider this explanation and scenario: 

Explanation: Sometimes, people owe money they can’t pay back in a reasonable amount of time or the time indicated in their payment terms. When this happens, their creditors might take them to court to get their money back. If the court decides that the person owes the money and they can’t pay it back, the court may order the sale of the person’s property to recover the money that is owed.

Scenario: Let’s say Pat Doe owes $10,000 to a bank, but can’t pay it back for whatever reason. The bank might take Pat Doe to court and ask the judge to order the sale of their house to pay off the debt. If the judge agrees, Pat Doe would have to sell their house, and the bank would get the money from the sale.

This law is complex and many factors go into a court’s decision to order the sale of property. 

Important Updates to the Lien Statute of Limitations

In Ohio, the Statute of Limitations varies depending on the type of lien. Here are the statute of limitations for some common types of liens in Ohio:

  • Mechanic’s lien: The deadline to file a mechanic’s lien in Ohio is 75 days from the last day of the month in which the lien claimant last performed work on the property or provided materials. If the lien is not filed within this time frame, the lien claimant loses their right to file a claim against the property.
  • Tax lien: The statute of limitations for a tax lien in Ohio is 15 years from the date the tax liability was assessed. This means that the government has 15 years to collect the taxes owed before the lien expires.
  • Judgment lien: In Ohio, a judgment lien can be valid for up to 5 years. However, the lien can be extended for an additional 5 years if the creditor files a renewal notice before the expiration of the original lien.

The Homestead Exemption

In Ohio, the Homestead Exemption is a property tax relief program that provides a reduction in the taxable value of a homeowner’s primary residence. The program is designed to help homeowners who are elderly, disabled, or surviving spouses of a deceased homeowner.

Under the Homestead Exemption program, eligible homeowners can receive a reduction of up to $25,000 in the taxable value of their home. This means that the amount of property taxes owed will be lower since taxes are calculated based on the taxable value of the property. To be eligible for the Homestead Exemption in Ohio, the homeowner must meet certain requirements that include the following:

  1. The homeowner must be at least 65 years old or permanently disabled, or a surviving spouse of a homeowner who was eligible at the time of their death.
  2. The home must be the homeowner’s primary residence.
  3. The total household income must be below a certain level, which is adjusted annually.
  4. The homeowner must own the property as of January 1st of the tax year.
  5. The total appraised value of the property must be $143,750 or less.

The Homestead Exemption is not automatic, and homeowners must apply for the program through their county auditor’s office. The deadline for application is typically the first Monday in June for the tax year in which the exemption is sought. The Homestead Exemption is just one of the property tax relief programs available in Ohio, and it is recommended to consult with a tax professional or the county auditor’s office to determine eligibility and benefits.

The Statute of Limitations refers to the period of time within which a lienholder may file a claim against a property or asset. Regardless of the type of lien, the Statute of Limitations will vary, which is why it is important to discuss these issues with an attorney before you file suit. 

Ohio Subrogation

At Keis George, we have the resources to confront complex claims, provide highly personalized attention, and offer a competitive fee structure. Clients may expect superior case management, information security, and most importantly, increased recoveries. Take advantage of our capabilities and allow Keis George to redefine what it means to recover your money faster. Contact one of our subrogation lawyers to schedule a consultation or discuss liens.