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.
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.