Notice Of Lis Pendens

Lis Pendens Texas

Real Estate Lawyers In Houston, TX

When a buyer or seller breaches a Real estate Purchase of Sales Contract the other interested party may file a lawsuit for protection. This lawsuit helps ensure the property is not sold or encumbered until the dispute is resolved. The lawsuit itself cannot stop the property from being sold, but the ancillary document drafted in the lawsuit and filed in the county records acts as notice to anyone that a civil action is pending concerning the title of the real property.

This ancillary document is called Lis Pendens and it must be filed in the county records where the property is located.

What Does The Law Say About Lis Pendens?

Lis Pendens Definition Real Estate

Lis Pendens TexasOnly a party that asserts direct interest in the real property can qualify for a lis pendens. That means that parties that only have monetary or collateral interest in a property cannot benefit from this. A  lis pendens ensures that the real property you may be entitled to remains untouched until the issue is resolved.

This document is actually an affidavit that has the effect of a Lien because  it notifies the public that the real property is under litigation.

According to the Texas Property Code Sec. 12.007. “LIS PENDENS”

(a) After the plaintiff’s statement in an eminent domain proceeding is filed or during the pendency of an action involving title to real property, the establishment of an interest in real property, or the enforcement of an encumbrance against real property, a party to the action who is seeking affirmative relief may file for record with the county clerk of each county where a part of the property is located a notice that the action is pending.

(b) The party filing a lis pendens or the party’s agent or attorney shall sign the lis pendens, which musty state:

(1)The style and number, if any, of the proceeding;

(2)the court in which the proceeding is pending;

(3) the names of the parties;

(4) the kind of proceeding; and

(5) a description of the property affected

How Long Does A Lis Pendens Last

Texas Lis Pendens Form

For a lis pendens  to have any effect, a lawsuit must be filed, which means that it automatically terminates  once a judgment has been given and no appeal is filed.  In other words a Lis Pendens cannot exist without the lawsuit. “ A lis pendens operates only during the pendency of the [underlying] suit, and only as to those matters that are involved in the suit. It terminates with the judgment, in the absence of an appeal.” Rosborough v. Cook, 108 Tex. 364, 367, 194 S.W. 131, 132 (1917).

Another way a lis pendens can end is if a court cancels it. This may happen if a notice of lis pendens is not filed correctly.  Most of the time this happens if the person that filed the notice of lis pendens has no real property claim. In this situation the judge may declare that the notice is based on “bogus assertions that cannot survive a challenge”.

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