Obtaining a Lien Release
If you had a loan at a failed bank which you paid off and the bank’s lien on your property was not released, we may be able to help. More information on lien releases
Confirm FDIC has the authority to assist with a lien release
FDIC may be able to assist you in obtaining a lien release if the request is for a customer of a failed bank that was placed into FDIC Receivership.
To determine if FDIC might be able to assist with a lien release, verify the bank was acquired with government assistance:
Are you having trouble finding a lien holder?
If the bank failed within the last two years and another bank purchased the failed bank, you should contact the acquiring bank (see the Failed Bank List). If the lien is for a subsidiary of a failed bank, the FDIC may also be able to assist you, contact FDIC DRR Customer Service at 888-206-4662.
FDIC cannot process lien releases for:
- Banks that merged without government assistance, unless the successor bank failed (see BankFind)
- Banks that were acquired without government assistance, unless the successor bank failed (see BankFind)
- Credit Unions (see NCUA)
- Mortgage and finance companies (see appropriate Secretary of State Office)
Compile required documents and prepare request for a lien release
Review the required documents based on the type of loan:
Register/Mail request to FDIC DRR Customer Service and Records Research
You must register and submit your request and supporting documentation through the Community Portal. Access the Community Portal site and submit requests directly at https://ask.fdic.gov/fdicinformationandsupportcenter/s/
Do not include your social security number in any correspondence.
Do not include a credit report as proof of payoff.
Requests are processed in the order they are received.
Allow 20 business days for processing once all information has been provided.
What can I expect and when can I expect a response?
Once the request has been entered through the Community Portal at https://ask.fdic.gov/fdicinformationandsupportcenter/s/ you will receive a screen notification of your assigned case number and then an acknowledgement email containing the case number.
Because of the large volume of requests received at the FDIC, it typically takes up to 20 business days to process a request once all required documentation has been provided by the requestor. If the required document(s) are not provided and extensive research is required, additional days may be added to our processing timeframe.
We cannot accept requests by phone or email.
You can contact FDIC DRR Customer Service at 888-206-4662 between the hours of 8am – 4pm Central Time Monday through Friday (except federal holidays) to speak to a customer service representative.
If you do not have access to a computer, you may mail your request to: FDIC, DRR Customer Service, 600 North Pearl Street, Suite 700, Dallas, TX
ABOUT LIENS AND LIEN RELEASES
What is a lien?
A lien is a claim or charge on property to ensure payment of a debt, obligation or duty to the lender.
The lender is the institution that made the loan.
The lender will record the Deed of Trust or Mortgage document in the public records with the appropriate agency in the county where the property is located. Once the loan is repaid, the lender should provide a recordable lien release document. It is very important that you record the lien release document with the same county agency that recorded the original Deed of Trust or Mortgage.
Why wasn’t the lien released by the bank when I paid it off years ago?
Since the FDIC was not the lender, the FDIC cannot answer that question. However, if your loan was with a failed bank or savings and loan, the FDIC may be able to assist you in obtaining a lien release.
Under what circumstance may the FDIC be able to help me obtain a lien release?
The FDIC may be able to assist in issuing a lien release in the following cases:
- If the lien holder is a bank or savings and loan that failed and has been placed into FDIC Receivership.
- If the lien holder is an active or recently dissolved Subsidiary of a failed bank or savings and loan.
- If the loan was paid off to the bank or savings and loan before the Institution failed.
- If the loan was paid off to the FDIC after the bank or savings and loan failed.
If you have any questions regarding the FDIC’s ability to assist with a lien release, please contact FDIC DRR Customer Service at 888-206-4662, between the hours of 8am - 4pm Central Time Monday through Friday (except federal holidays).
Why do I have to provide so much information? Don't you already have the records?
The FDIC is the Receiver of the failed bank or savings and loan. FDIC is not the actual lender, and the failed bank records in our possession are limited. If there is an acquiring institution for a failed bank or savings and loan, in most cases, the records were transferred to the acquirer. The acquirer may have information that will assist you with obtaining a lien release.