Priority Lien - Pennsylvania 

PA Code

Lien for assessments - 68 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 3315


     § 3315.  Lien for assessments.
        (a)  General rule.--The association has a lien on a unit for
     any assessment levied against that unit or fines imposed against
     its unit owner from the time the assessment or fine becomes due.
     The association's lien may be foreclosed in like manner as a
     mortgage on real estate. A judicial or other sale of the unit in
     execution of a common element lien or any other lien shall not
     affect the lien of a mortgage thereon, except the mortgage for
     which the sale is being held, if the mortgage is or shall be
     prior to all other liens upon the same property except those
     liens identified in 42 Pa.C.S. § 8152(a) (relating to judicial
     sale as affecting lien of mortgage) and liens for condominium
     assessments created under this section. Unless the declaration
     otherwise provides, fees, charges, late charges, fines and
     interest charged pursuant to section 3302(a)(10), (11) and (12)
     (relating to powers of unit owners' association) and reasonable
     costs and expenses of the association, including legal fees,
     incurred in connection with collection of any sums due the
     association by the unit owner or enforcement of the provisions
     of the declaration, bylaws, rules or regulations against the
     unit owner are enforceable as assessments under this section. If
     an assessment is payable in installments and one or more
     installments is not paid when due, the entire outstanding
     balance of the assessment becomes effective as a lien from the
     due date of the delinquent installment.
        (b)  Priority of lien.--
            (1)  General rule.--A lien under this section is prior to
        all other liens and encumbrances on a unit except:
                (i)  Liens and encumbrances recorded before the
            recordation of the declaration.
                (ii)  (A)  Mortgages and deeds of trust on the unit
            securing first mortgage holders and recorded before the
            due date of the assessment, if the assessment is not
            payable in installments, or the due date of the unpaid
            installment, if the assessment is payable in
                    (B)  Judgments obtained for obligations secured
                by mortgages or deeds of trust under clause (A).
                (iii)  Liens for real estate taxes and other
            governmental assessments or charges against the unit.
            (2)  Limited nondivestiture.--The association's lien for
        assessments shall be divested by a judicial sale of the unit:
                (i)  As to unpaid common expense assessments made
            under section 3314(b) (relating to assessments for common
            expenses) that come due during the six months immediately
            preceding the date of a judicial sale of a unit in an
            action to enforce collection of a lien against a unit.
                (ii)  As to unpaid common expense assessments made
            under section 3314(b) other than the six months
            assessment referred to in subparagraph (i), in the full
            amount of these unpaid assessments, whether or not the
            proceeds of the judicial sale are adequate to pay these
            assessments. To the extent the proceeds of the sale are
            sufficient to pay some or all of these additional
            assessments, after satisfaction in full of the costs of
            the judicial sale, and the liens and encumbrances of the
            types described in paragraph (1) and the unpaid common
            expense assessments that come due during the six-month
            period described in subparagraph (i), they shall be paid
            before any remaining proceeds may be paid to any other
            claimant, including the prior owner of the unit.
            (3)  Monetary exemption.--The lien is not subject to the
        provisions of 42 Pa.C.S. § 8123 (relating to general monetary
        (c)  Notice and perfection of lien.--Subject to the
     provisions of subsection (b), recording of the declaration
     constitutes record notice and perfection of the lien.
        (d)  Limitation of actions.--A lien for unpaid assessments is
     extinguished unless proceedings to enforce the lien are
     instituted within three years after the assessments become
        (e)  Other remedies preserved.--Nothing in this section shall
     be construed to prohibit actions or suits to recover sums for
     which subsection (a) creates a lien or to prohibit an
     association from taking a deed in lieu of foreclosure.
        (f)  Costs and attorney's fees.--A judgment or decree in any
     action or suit brought under this section shall include costs
     and reasonable attorney's fees for the prevailing party.
        (g)  Statement of unpaid assessments.--The association shall
     furnish to a unit owner upon written request a recordable
     statement setting forth the amount of unpaid assessments
     currently levied against his unit and any credits of surplus in
     favor of his unit pursuant to section 3313 (relating to surplus
     funds). The statement shall be furnished within ten business
     days after receipt of the request and is binding on the
     association, the executive board and every unit owner.
        (h)  Application of payments.--Unless the declaration
     otherwise provides, any payment received by an association in
     connection with the lien under this section shall be applied
     first to any interest accrued by the association, then to any
     late fee, then to any costs and reasonable attorney fees
     incurred by the association in collection or enforcement and
     then to the delinquent assessment. The foregoing shall be
     applicable notwithstanding any restrictive endorsement,
     designation or instructions placed on or accompanying a payment.
     (Dec. 18, 1992, P.L.1279, No.168, eff. 45 days; Nov. 30, 2004,
     P.L.1509, No.191, eff. 60 days)

        2004 Amendment.  Act 191 amended subsec. (b) and added
     subsec. (h).
        Cross References.  Section 3315 is referred to in section
     3102 of this title.

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