NOTICE OF LIS PENDENS: Definition, Examples, and Requirement Checklist

Notice of Lis Pendens
Notice of Lis Pendens

A notice stating that a lawsuit has been filed concerning real estate or other property is known as a “lis pendens,” which is Latin for “suit pending.” At the start of the foreclosure procedure, if you receive a notice of default followed by a notice of lis pendens, it signifies that a notice of the filing of a foreclosure on your property has been made public and will show up in any title reports that are obtained as well as in the public record. Let’s read on to find out what a Florida notice of lis pendens is, and the release of a notice of lis pendens.

Notice of Lis Pendens

An official notification to the public that a lawsuit involving a claim on the property has been filed is known as a lis pendens. Lis pendens refers to the idea that a buyer of real estate is responsible for any ongoing legal disputes involving the property.

If a bank is suing the owner of a lot and a new buyer buys it, the case will be transferred to the new owner. The plaintiff can still file a lawsuit after the sale of the property. It might be a potential liability.

What Does a Lis Pendens Mean?

Lis pendens is a legal way to notify everyone who may be interested in a piece of real estate. It brings to their notice that a claim and legal action are being pursued against the property. It is significant because it alerts prospective buyers about a competing claim to the property. New buyers may forfeit the property or be held accountable for the claim if that party prevails in a lawsuit.

What is Notice of Lis Pendens

Also referred to as a notice of the action’s pending status. It is a document that notifies the public that a case has been filed that alleges a claim against the title to or another interest in real estate. A legal description of the real estate must be included in the lis pendens. Real property must be involved in the claim action to foreclose a lien. It is often started with a lis pendens, such as:

  • A lien for repairs.
  • The mortgage lien of a lender.
  • A claim for overdue common charges or property taxes.

The structure and substance of a lis pendens, as well as the filing process, are governed by state and local regulations. In some jurisdictions, submitting a lis pendens entails two steps, which are as follows:

  • first submission to the county clerk.
  • one that was added later to the county land records.

A summons and complaint or other direct notice of the action are also served on the property owner by the person who files the lis pendens. An action to have a lis pendens erased may be started by a property owner who believes the filer is not entitled to the lis pendens.

Release of Notice of Lis Pendens

A counterclaim known as a Release of Lis Pendens gives defendants who are trying to sell a property redress. Release of Lis Pendens A surety bond guarantees that the expense of Lis Pendens will be covered to return the property to the defendant.

A lis pendens is formally recorded in the county where the property is located after it is filed. This adds numerous obstacles and makes the process of buying and selling the relevant property quite challenging. This is mostly because buyers will steer clear of any property with claims made against it or a blemish on the title.

Notice of Lis Pendens in Florida

In Florida, a lis pendens is frequently used to notify other parties of an ongoing legal action involving real estate. A lis pendens, when correctly filed, shields the plaintiff in a case from any subsequent liens placed on the property. But until the lis pendens is lifted, property owners might not be able to sell, get financing, or get title insurance. It’s crucial to understand the dos and don’ts of lis pendens in Florida, whether a party is filing one or one is filed against their property.

A lis pendens is a frequently utilized legal device in Florida cases regarding title or interest in real estate. Lis pendens is occasionally not filed correctly, though. Plaintiffs should get legal counsel before submitting a lis pendens.

In addition, if a property owner learns that a lis pendens has been filed against their home, a lawyer might be able to help them get the lis pendens removed and get compensation for their losses.

Example of a Lis Pendens

The lis pendens doctrine is most frequently applied in Florida real estate foreclosure cases. The notice of lis pendens on a property is triggered when a foreclosure action is entered into the public records.

A copy of the notification is then sent to the property owner and entered into the county courthouse’s public records. By doing this, the owner is made informed of the impending foreclosure process and given the option to halt it if wanted.

When to Use a Lis Pendens

Lis pendens can be utilized whenever there is a real estate dispute, but it is most frequently applied in the following three circumstances:


In divorce proceedings where the division of real estate has not been resolved, a lis pendens is frequently issued. When a property is registered in the name of one spouse and the other spouse wants a share of the asset, it happens frequently. In light of ongoing litigation, the spouse whose name is on the title can find it challenging to sell the home.

Mortgage Foreclosure/Default

Lenders who have filed a notice of default against a delinquent borrower nearly invariably use lis pendens. The process is used by banks to inform the public that a property is in foreclosure. A property may also be foreclosed upon by other creditors whose debt is collateralized by the property.

Contractual Conflicts

Lis pendens frequently comes up in contract disputes when a buyer feels they have been unfairly barred from buying a residence. For instance, if buyer A and a seller engage in a contract for the purchase of a house and the seller chooses to sell the house to buyer B, buyer A may choose to sue the seller to enforce the sale.

After launching a lawsuit, the buyer may file a lis pendens, which would make it challenging for the seller to sell the property. Buyer B loses the property to Buyer A and must go to the seller to recover their money if they persist with the purchase and the courts decide that Buyer A is allowed to enforce the transaction.

How Important Is a Lis Pendens?

It is crucial to record a lis pendens in a specific performance case. This is because, under certain conditions, if the seller transfers the title to a third party before the sale is finished, the buyer will be entitled to seek specific performance against the transferee. Legal Code 3395. However, to exercise that entitlement, the transferee must not be a genuinely bonafide buyer who paid market value for the property without being aware of the previous sales contract. The recording of a lis pendens is a crucial method of giving notice.

A lis pendens notifies everyone that a property may be at risk of foreclosure because it is public information. The ability to negotiate a price below market value or to utilize the knowledge to deter potential buyers from buying the property makes having this information useful. Knowing a property’s legal standing gives you a great deal of negotiating power.

Lis Pendens: Who Issues Them?

Whoever has a claim to real estate may file a lis pendens with the county clerk where they reside. The lis pendens must be active for it to be effective.

Can a House Be Sold While It Is under Lis Pendant?

Even if there is a lis pendens, you can still sell your home, however, it can be challenging. Lis pendens can lower a property’s value and make selling more difficult. There are extra processes that must be taken before the deed can be transferred when a property has a lis pendens.

Can You Buy a Property under Pis Pendens?

You could be able to purchase a house with a lis pendens because a seller is permitted to sell a property with one. Because the purchase does not end the litigation, it may be hazardous. You as the buyer consent to support the case and be bound by its verdict.

Therefore, if a property has a notice of lis pendens on it, act with caution. Your financial obligations and property rights may be impacted by the litigation. It may also affect your capacity to obtain a mortgage.


Lis pendens is a legal notice that a claim against a piece of property is supported by an active court case. The notification must be submitted to the county clerk of court in the county where you reside and published in the real estate records of the county.

Before filing and serving the notice, a lawsuit must already be ongoing. Anyone with an interest in a property can draft and file a lis pendens. But since the language must be precise and it is a complicated form, it is preferable to have a local real estate attorney prepare it for you.


What is lis pendens Philippines?

Lis pendens, which literally translates to “pending suit,” is the authority, power, or control that a court obtains over the assets at issue in a lawsuit, both during the pendency of the action and until the case is resolved.

What is a lis pendens in North Carolina?

One of the more significant documents filed in a will contest or fiduciary litigation in North Carolina is a lis pendens (NC). Lis Pendens, which roughly translates to “litigation pending,” informs people that the real estate involved in the estate, trust, or fiduciary matter is the subject of an ongoing legal dispute.

What does pendency of action mean?

A legal action in which a claim to real property is made is announced in a notice of pendency of the action, also known as a Lis Pendens.

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