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In the United States of America, the term lien generally refers to a wide range of encumbrances and would include other forms of mortgage or charge. In the U.S., a lien characteristically refers to non-possessory security interests. A UCC filing is similar to a Canadian PPSA filing.

A tax lien is a lien imposed on property by law to secure payment of taxes. Tax liens may be imposed for delinquent taxes owed on real property or personal property), or as a result of failure to pay income taxes or other taxes.

Unlike personal debts, tax liens on real estate "run with the land"; that is, a property owner becomes responsible for payment even if the tax obligation was incurred by a prior owner. Depending on the law of the State or jurisdiction, the owner of the property may also be personally liable for payment of the taxes.

A Federal tax lien may arise in connection with any kind of Federal tax, including but not limited to income tax, gift tax, or estate tax.

Revised: 7 Mar 08

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