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 Who Can File a Maritime Lien
 

Anyone can file a maritime claim of lien under certain circumstances. You can assert a claim of lien against a maritime property if you are due with the compensation for having provided labor, goods, mortgage monies and other services and supplies or have suffered the loss of or injury to person or property for which you have not been compensated. A maritime lien remains attached to a vessel from owner-to-owner—regardless of re-sale—and whether it has been filed publicly or not. Since a maritime lien remains in place and follows a vessel everywhere, it allows the vessel to go on sailing and conducting its business, with the understanding that the debt will be paid in the future. Indeed, maritime liens were designed to promote the continuation of business as usual. However the longer the person waits to enforce a maritime lien the more likely it is that subsequent liens will take priority or that the lien will be unenforceable due to unreasonable delay (laches). At the same time, a claimant can force settlement of a lien by bringing suit against a vessel and requiring the courts to sell the vessel to satisfy the lien. In reality, this rarely happens. Most claims are resolved out of court according to a settlement plan.

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