A lien is the right to retain the lawful possession of the property of another until the owner fulfills a legal duty to the person holding the property, such as the payment of lawful charges for work done on the property. A mortgage is a common lien. The right of lien generally arises by operation of law. However, in some cases it is created by express contract. There are two kinds of lien such as particular and general.
Liens can be consensual or non-consensual. Consensual liens are imposed by a contract between the creditor and the debtor. Nonconsensual liens arise by statute or by the operation of the common law. Liens are also “perfected” or “unperfected.” Perfected liens are those liens for which a creditor has established a priority right in the encumbered property with respect to third party creditors.