noun | \ ˈlēn \
  1. : a charge or encumbrance upon property for the satisfaction of a debt or other duty that is created by agreement of the parties or especially by operation of law; specifically : a security interest created especially by a mortgage : a security interest created especially by a mortgage

    — assessment lien
    : a lien that is on property benefiting from an improvement made by a municipality and that secures payment of the taxes assessed to pay for the improvement

    — attachment lien
    : a lien acquired on property by a creditor upon levy of an attachment

    — carrier's lien
    : a lien against freight conferring on the carrier the right to retain the property until the amount due is paid

    — charging lien
    : a lien attaching to a judgment or recovery awarded to a plaintiff and securing payment of the plaintiff's attorney's fees and expenses — called also special lien

    — choate lien
    : a lien that requires no further action to be made enforceable and that identifies the lienor, the property subject to the lien, and the amount of the lien

    — common-law lien
    : a lien under common law giving a creditor (as a bailee) in possession of property the right to retain possession until payment of the amount due

    — equitable lien
    : a lien against property that does not require possession of the property and that is available in equity to prevent unjust enrichment

    — factor's lien
    : a lien against property held on consignment by a factor conferring the right to retain possession of the property until payment of the amount due Note: A factor's lien is simply a security interest and, unlike a common-law lien, is enforceable even after the factor is no longer in possession of the property.

    — first lien
    : a lien taking precedence over all other claims, charges, or encumbrances of the same general category but not necessarily over those (as taxes) imposed by government sanction

    — floating lien
    : a lien created in a security agreement against property owned by the debtor at the time of the agreement's creation as well as property acquired after the agreement's creation

    — general lien
    : a lien that is for the satisfaction of a balance due from an owner of property and that is not confined to the amount due in respect to the property itself : retaining lien in this entry

    — inchoate lien
    : a lien for which some procedure remains unfinished or some term remains undetermined

    — involuntary lien
    : a lien that arises other than by the debtor's consent (as by operation of law)

    — judgment lien
    : a lien acquired against the property of a debtor by a creditor upon obtaining a favorable judgment

    — judicial lien
    : a lien obtained by a legal or equitable process (as judgment, levy, attachment, or execution)

    — junior lien
    : a lien that is lower in priority relative to other liens

    — landlord's lien
    : a lien against the goods and valuables of a tenant to secure payment of rent or sometimes repayment of money otherwise owed to a landlord

    — maritime lien
    : a lien arising under maritime law against a ship or its cargo (as for services or supplies tendered or for damages caused by a collision) which may be enforced by a court-ordered seizure of the property in order to satisfy the obligation

    — materialman's lien
    : a lien on property for materials supplied

    — mechanic's lien
    : a lien against a building and its site to assure priority of payment for labor or services (as construction and sometimes design) or material

    — retaining lien
    : a lien that attaches to the papers or property of a client which have come into his or her attorney's possession in the course of employment and that secures payment of the attorney's fees — called also general lien

    — senior lien
    : a lien that is higher in priority relative to other liens

    — special lien
    : an equitable lien enforceable to compel performance of an obligation (as under a divorce settlement) : charging lien in this entry

    — specific lien
    : a lien upon specific property as security for the payment of a debt or the satisfaction of some other obligation arising out of a transaction or agreement involving that property — compare general lien in this entry

    — statutory lien
    : a lien imposed by statute

    — tax lien
    : a statutory lien on property for taxes due giving the taxing authority a security interest in the property — compare tax sale at sale

    — vendor's lien
    : a lien on especially real property securing payment in full of the purchase price by the buyer

    — voluntary lien
    : a lien created (as by contract) with the consent of the debtor