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Lien vs reserve

April 21 2017 at 4:11 AM

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Response to highest bidder

The two do not necessarily dictate each other. That $20k lien is a discretionary reserve. The provider asserts that amount is owed. He could sell it for at a well advertised public auction to the highest bidder $1 if he wants the money instead of the car or decide to keep the vehicle if the lien amount is not realized at sale. Usually the property is released for whatever it will bring. Given this is a valuable item, he might hold out for the whole amount so he can do something else with it- keep it, sell it or whatever.

A lien is a legal structure serving as a firewall between the delinquent party and the service provider to allow the service provider to reclaim specific clarified compensation for services provided. Prior notice of charges has to be provided before fees can be charged, then sufficiently publicly advertised so that the delinquent party or their representatives has full opportunity to resolve the matter before the service provider has legal grounds to dispose of the property. Laws vary, but if the lien value is surpassed at public sale, the delinquent party may be entitled to any overage realized by the sale. Otherwise, claiming a lien of inflated value could be used to essentially steal property.

We spoke with a magistrate recently regarding potential storage charges on some machine equipment. He said that written notice must be provided and the party notified has five days to remove the property before storage fees begin. Until formal, specific notice of reasonable (legal) storage charges and related information is provided, there is no basis to charge a storage fee- even if many years have passed (exactly our situation).

I also spoke with a custom car builder last month. We discussed stalled projects eating up floor space. He said the going rate for indoor storage was $1/sf of space per day and that a number of his peers said they paid their overhead via such storage fees on stalled projects. A disassembled car, boxes of parts and such eat up a lot of shop space. $1/sf per day sounds high to me (may or not be a legal amount to charge) but if notification is given at Day 1 it would certainly provide a starting point for a fee schedule during a long resto project.

Seized property is different than liens. When the police seize it and sell it, it's all theirs. Most lien sales fall short of the claimed damages and the provider takes whatever they can get so they can move on.. But most lien sales don't include a 68 1/2 CJ..
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1967 Galaxie 500 Red original Q code 428
1967 Galaxie 500 White with Black stripes 428PI clone- car is dead & long gone, sold near Oak Ridge TN 2000, would love to find it.....
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