It can also be used in a way that seemingly works against you but can be in actuality to your benefit. Take the case of the bank or mortgage company who repossesses your house. Very often, they will file Lis Pendens against you because they think that you are basically bullet proof and so there is very little chance that a judgment and garnishment would produce any benefit for the creditor. But since the creditor often likes to take no chance that your ship might come in someday in which eventuality he could then go into court at any time prior to the end of the 5 year statute of limitations and file an actual judgement against you. After 5 years in most states, he must re-file or renew his Lis Pendens or he loses the right to re-file and also loses the right to file an actual judgment against you. So what it basically boils down to in practical use is to be much like a 5 year place-holder for the creditor. What usually happens is that by the time the 5 years is up, the creditor has forgotten all about you and the Lis Pendens is allowed to drop out. Another way that the Lis Pendens can be used by the debtor is to file his own Lis Pendens against the property just prior to the sheriff's sale. Doing so will place a cloud upon the title, and the sheriff must anounce the presence of the debtor's Lis Pendens publicly and loudly so that potential buyers will know that a cloud upon the title exists. The theory here is revealed with the simple question , "Who would buy and pay cash for a property upon which a cloud against the title exists?" The answer is, of course, nobody would want to buy a piece of property knowing in advance that it may in fact never be his free and clear. None of the above is meant to advise anyone that they should rush out and file a Lis Pendens against a property they had just lost control of without benefit of advice of counsel. If you think you have a legitimate reason why your property should not be sold at auction, go get a lawyer to help you so you do not make a grevious error. However, some people have filed Lis Pendens on vehicles that have been seized by the IRS and were being sold at auction. The auctioneer, having been forced to announce the existance of a Lis Pendens on the vehicle or property could then find no bidders so the sale was stopped. After some other arguments were entered against the IRS, they decided that what they were likely to get out of the confiscated property would not be worth it so long as there was a fight, so they simply returned the property. I have no idea how true the above paragraph might be, and I'd sure hate to see somebody believe it based on what I have heard from others and then run into serious legal problems. It's a story that I heard somewhere, not something that I know has ever happened. In the event that you think it might accidently work, go get a lawyer. The files will be on line sometime tonight and it will be 7 pages of actual court rulings and legal discussion about the process. When it is done, I will anounce it's completion in this thread so that you can click on the link and read the pages.