On May 16, 2013, the Nebraska Legislature enacted the Commercial Real Estate Broker Lien Act, Neb. Rev. Stat. § 52-2101 et seq., which is intended to protect commercial real estate brokers against nonpayment of lease and sales commissions. Nebraska and twenty-six other states currently have laws providing lien-loss protection for commercial real estate fees.
The Nebraska Act allows a broker who has provided licensed services to file a lien for the amount of the commission owed on commercial real estate or any interest in commercial real estate that is the subject of a purchase, lease, or other conveyance. A notice of lien must be recorded in the office of the register of deeds in the county where the commercial real estate is located. The notice of lien attaches as of the recording of the notice and cannot relate back to the date of the commission agreement. The time within which a broker must record the notice of lien depends upon the nature of the interest being conveyed. When a conveyance or transfer of commercial real estate gives rise to a lien under the Act, the notice of lien must be recorded prior to the transfer. When a lease, sublease, or an assignment of lease gives rise to a lien under the Act, the notice of lien must be recorded no later than ninety days after the tenant takes possession of the leased premises.
The Act also allows for liens for future commissions to be placed on commercial real estate. Specifically, if any additional commission is due to the broker because of future events (such as the exercise of an option to expand the leased premises, a lease extension or a lease renewal), then a broker may record a notice of lien no later than ninety days after the event on which the claimed commission occurs. In the event that such commercial real estate is sold prior to the due date of the future commission, and provided that the broker has filed a valid lien, then the purchaser or transferee is deemed to have notice of the broker's lien and takes title subject to the lien.
If you have questions about your rights under the Commercial Real Estate Broker Lien Act or are interested in taking action in accordance with the Act, your real estate attorney can offer valuable insight on the issues involved, including filing a notice of lien.
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