What is a Municipal Lien Certificate?

Are you refinancing or purchasing a home?  If so, you might have heard of a document entitled a “Municipal Lien Certificate” (aka MLC).  You might be asking what is this document?

It is a document you receive from your local town or city hall that lists taxes, and could also list any assessments and water or other bills. It will also tell you how your taxes are billed – usually quarterly or semi-annually.

Why they are important:

  • Could let know if there are back owed taxes;
  • Give you an estimate on how much your taxes will be;
  • Gives you a time frame when the taxes are due;
  • Usually must be recorded at the Registry of Deeds in a purchase and/or refinance of a home.

Note that the MLC should not be the only document you rely on for any back owed property taxes.  For example, some MLC’s only go back a few years.  It might not list a lien on the property and therefore you should contact an attorney to perform a proper title search.

Please contact your attorney or town/city for costs.

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