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HOUSE BILL NO. 361
INTRODUCED BY J. SHOCKLEY
AN ACT REVISING THE LAWS RELATING TO LIENS; PROVIDING THAT IN CERTAIN CASES A LIENHOLDER IS REQUIRED TO PAY ATTORNEY FEES IN ADDITION TO COSTS IF THE LIENHOLDER REJECTS A DEFENDANT'S OFFER OF JUDGMENT; PROVIDING THAT A LIEN MAY NOT BE RELEASED UNTIL COSTS AND ATTORNEY FEES ARE PAID; AND AMENDING SECTIONS 71-3-124 AND 71-3-131, MCA.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
Section 1. Section 71-3-124, MCA, is amended to read:
"71-3-124. Filing costs and
attorneys' attorney fees to be recovered on foreclosure of liens -- offer of judgment.
(1) In an action to foreclose any of the liens provided for by parts part 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, or 10 of this chapter, the court must
shall allow as costs the money paid and attorney fees incurred for filing and recording the lien and a reasonable attorney's fee
attorney fees in the district and supreme courts , and such. The costs and attorneys' attorney fees must be allowed to each
claimant whose lien is established, and such the reasonable attorneys' attorney fees must be allowed to the defendant against
whose property a lien is claimed , if such the lien be is not established.
(2) In an action to foreclose any of the liens provided for by part 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, or 10 of this chapter, a defendant may make an offer of judgment as authorized in Rule 68, M.R.Civ.P. If the lienholder rejects the offer to allow judgment to be taken against the defendant and the lienholder obtains a judgment that is not more favorable than the offer, the lienholder shall, in addition to the costs allowed under Rule 68, M.R.Civ.P., pay the attorney fees incurred after the offer is made."
Section 2. Section 71-3-131, MCA, is amended to read:
"71-3-131. Acknowledgment of lien satisfaction -- penalty.
Whenever (1) Subject to subsection (2), when a lien
authorized under this chapter is paid and satisfied or the claim upon which it is based has been found invalid by final order or
judgment of a court of competent jurisdiction, it is the duty of the creditors to shall acknowledge satisfaction within 30 days
and discharge the lien of record by filing a release of the lien in the office of the county clerk and recorder in each county in
which the notice of lien was filed. If any creditor fails to acknowledge satisfaction, he the creditor is liable to any person
injured by such the failure for a civil penalty of $100, plus any other damages provided by law.
(2) If the owner of the property against which a lien is filed pays the underlying claim before an action is filed on that claim or to foreclose the lien, the owner of the property against which the lien was filed shall pay the lienholder's costs and attorney fees incurred for filing and recording the lien before the lien may be released."
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Latest Version of HB 361 (HB0361.ENR)
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