Liens for mechanics
We will supply all documents and DMV fees necessary to apply for the Authorization to Conduct a Lien Sale. We will notify all registered and legal owner(s) and known parties of interest of the pending lien sale.
For Over $4000 liens, We will run the required newspaper advertisement and mail the required certified letters (after paying the 2nd half fee). We will notify you of the sale date and provide all final lien sale documentation for transfer of title, or salvage, approximately 6 days prior to the sale day.
A lien can be filed either “after a statement of charges for completed work is presented to the registered owner or 15 days after the work or services are completed” (DMV civil code 3068).
Vehicles under $4000 approximately 35 days. Vehicles over $4000 and Vessel, usually 90 to 120 days. Out of state vehicles will add about 30 days on top of these timelines.
A lien must be filed within 30 days of completing repairs. Repair fees can only be included on a lien if the date you last worked on the vehicle is within 30 days of starting the lien (up to 30 days prior to the lien). A bureau of automotive repair number is required in order to claim repairs on a lien sale, unless your business is exempt from being required to have this license.
How many days of storage can I charge?
If the vehicle has been there longer than 30 days, the lien can still be started, but you are only allowed to collect no more than 30 days prior to the lien in storage, as well as time while the lien is in process (up to 60 days total for under $4000 liens, and up to 120 days for out of state liens and over $4000 liens). If an owner comes to pay for and pick up the vehicle and provides you proof of current ownership, they will only owe you the amount of storage that has accrued from the date storage starts (this date can be found on your lien sale packet once the lien is filed). If they cannot provide you with sufficient proof of ownership, then they will have to wait until the date of sale to pick up the vehicle and will owe you to total amount of storage, lien fee, and repairs if applicable.
How much storage per day should I charge?
Storage rates are not regulated by the State of California. If you are a business who makes it a practice to regularly store vehicles, your daily storage rate should be clearly posted within your customer’s view. A lien sale will typically provide you with no more than 30 days of storage at your posted rate. However, if the vehicle has out of state plates, if the vehicle ID (VIN) has been altered or removed, if a person of interest arrives after the lien sale has been started, or if the lien sale has been opposed and we have received a Letter of Continuation from the California Department of Motor Vehicles, or if the vehicle’s value be determined to be more than $4000 you may be eligible for up to 120 days of storage at your posted rate.
How do you know what type of lien you need to file?
No persons at I-Lien Lien Service can determine the value of a vehicle for you. We can advise you on how the value of your vehicle relates to the type of lien you should file. After submitting your order, we can help determine that with you.
Who determines the value of the vehicle?
YOU do. If you need some guidance, Kelly Blue Book is a helpful tool. It is based on the value of the vehicle as it sits today, not by the amount of accumulated storage or repairs owed. Representatives at I-lien cannot determine the value for you.
The legal owner will be notified of the lien sale, along with the registered owner and any interested parties listed. However, if the legal owner wishes to pick up the vehicle from you, they are only responsible for up to $1,250 in storage, up to $1,500 in repairs, as well as the lien fees (this can be found in the paperwork we mail you). The legal owner can be liable for the full amount of repairs and storage if: ” prior to commencing any work, services, storage, safekeeping, or rental of parking space, the person claiming the lien gives actual notice in writing either by personal service or by registered letter addressed to the legal owner named in the registration certificate, and the written consent of that legal owner is obtained before any work, services, storage, safekeeping, or rental of parking space are performed” (DMV civil code 3068).
Can someone stop the lien sale?
YES. Any person known to have an interest in the vehicle may stop your lien by filing a Declaration of Opposition with the California Department of Motor Vehicles within the time frame allowed by law (This must be signed within 10 days of mailing the Notice of Pending Lien Sale.) A Declaration of Opposition is (and must) be included with the Notice of Pending Lien Sale we mail to all Registered Owners, Legal Owners and Interested Parties.
What happens if someone stops (opposes) a lien sale?
If you are notified by the California Department of Motor Vehicles and by a representative of I-Lien Lien Service that a valid Declaration of Opposition has been received, you have the following options:
Regardless of which of the three options you pursue, a DMV authorization to continue will be required before you can proceed with the lien sale. Therefore, we advise you to forward any and all documentation you receive regarding an opposed lien sale to our office. We will need to file your documents with the California Department of Motor Vehicles so that we may receive the appropriate continuation documents on your behalf. Once we receive the authorization letter to continue, a representative from I-Lien will contact you about re-starting the lien sale in the form of a 10 day sale (this includes paying full price for a new lien).
Accepting any amount of money from your customer will invalidate your lien! Once you accept any money from your customer, the lien sale is canceled.
What happens after the lien sale?
Sign and date all lien sale documents and give them to the byer, except for the release of liability (which is your responsibility to submit to DMV). The purchaser is granted FIVE days to submit a completed and signed set of lien sale documents to any authorized California Department of Motor Vehicles field office. Make sure you make copies before and after you sign these documents!
Do you have to register the vehicle after the sale?
NO, the lien sale documents do not expire, however, DMV fees will continue to accrue (example: registration fees). Any DMV fees owed will fall on the next registered owner to pay. If the vehicle registration expired while in your possession and you are a dealer, lessor retailer, garage, or operator of a towing service and you sell the vehicle, the buyer has 20 days from the lien sale date to pay fees without penalty, or pay a transfer fee and a planned non-operation fee. Otherwise, a planned non-op must be filed prior to the vehicle expiration date or penalty fees are due. If the vehicle came into your possession before the fees started accruing, the buyer can usually pay the fees without paying a penalty if registered within the allotted time.
If you sell the vehicle for more than you are owed on the sale date, you must submit theses additional funds to the Department of Motor Vehicles, Lien Sale Section, 2415 1st Ave., Sacramento, CA 95818 for deposit into the Motor Vehicle Account, State Transportation Fund. This is to be submitted with a completed copy of the Certificate of Lien Sale. If the lien sale date passes without an owner or interested party coming forward to pay for and pick up the vehicle, then the vehicle can be sold for any amount that can be agreed upon by the byer and seller.
No lien shall attach to any personal property in the vehicle. The personal property in or on the vehicle shall be given to the current registered owner upon demand (personal property does not include wheels, radios, speakers or anything attached to the vehicle). The lienholder shall not be responsible for personal property after the lien sale date.
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