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English definition of “lien”

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lien

noun [C]
 
 
/ˈliːən/ LAW
an official order that allows someone to keep the property of a person who owes them money until the money has been paid back: This could occur where someone has a lien over the goods, i.e. a right to retain possession of them until a debt is paid. State law allows the city to put a lien on the property to grab its money when it's sold.a lien against sth Officials want to place a lien against half of the home to ensure payment. The bank intends to hold a lien on the entire balance for the $400 due. claim/exercise/have a lien →  See also broker's lien , carrier's lien , first lien , general lien , priority lien , second lien loan , seller's lien , tax lien
(Definition of lien from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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