A non-consensual claim to the property of another as collateral to ensure the repayment of a debt. An involuntary lien may be imposed by a court, often for non-payment of taxes. The involuntary lien gives the tax authority (or other body) the right to confiscate one's property if the debt is not settled. An involuntary lien contrasts with a voluntary lien, to which the debtor consents.
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A lien on real estate that results without the property owners' voluntary cooperation in the placement of the lien. Examples include tax liens and judgment liens. Contrast with a mortgage,which is voluntary.
The Complete Real Estate Encyclopedia by Denise L. Evans, JD & O. William Evans, JD. Copyright © 2007 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.