It’s a simple document – that can strike fear in the heart of the most experienced owner, buyer, or broker.

A Lis Pendens (Latin for: Notice of Pending Action) is recorded to advise a potential purchaser or lender of another’s claim to ownership of the real property that is adverse to the owner of record. It kills deals.

What many don’t know is that you must follow very strict rules in recording that lis pendens, or it is invalid. And if the owner brings a motion to expunge it, and wins, the owner “shall” be awarded attorney fees. In some cases, the owner can get attorney fees, even if the lis pendens is voluntarily withdrawn before the hearing on an expungement motion.

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