Section 35-20-12

Liens for unpaid assessments.

(a) Except as may be otherwise provided in the declaration or the governing documents of an association, an association shall have, and there is declared, a lien on every lot for unpaid assessments levied against that lot arising on and from the date the assessment is due as fixed and determined by the board of directors at an annual meeting after giving notice as provided in Chapter 3 of Title 10A. The lien may be enforced or foreclosed as provided in the declaration or governing documents or as provided in this section. Written notice of the assessment and lien shall be given to the owner of any lot on which the assessment and lien is claimed by personal delivery or first class United States mail, postage prepaid.

(b) A lien declared by this section shall have priority, except as may be otherwise provided in Chapters 4 and 11, over all other subsequent liens and encumbrances except state and county ad valorem taxes, municipal improvement assessments, UCC fixture filings, mortgages, and deeds of trust securing an indebtedness.

(c) The association, within 12 months from the date any assessment becomes due, shall record a statement of lien verified by an officer or director of the association having personal knowledge of the facts in the office of the judge of probate of the county in which a lot subject to the assessment is located, which shall contain all of the following:

(1) A description of the lot on which the lien is claimed.

(2) The name of the association claiming the lien.

(3) The name of the owner or owners of the lot on which the lien is claimed.

(4) The amount of any unpaid assessments together with the date of the assessments.

(5) The amount of any other interests and costs claimed by the association.

(d) At least 30 days prior to recording a statement of lien, the association shall give written notice by certified mail to the owner of the lot or other person obligated for the lien, as shown on the books and records of the association, that the statement will be recorded in the office of the judge of probate.

(e) An association may bring an action in a court having jurisdiction to enforce a lien declared in this section in the county where the lot is located by filing a verified complaint, attaching a copy of the statement of the lien, alleging those facts showing it is entitled to a lien for the claimed unpaid assessment in accordance with the Alabama Rules of Civil Procedure.

(f) The court in which the action is pending may enforce the lien by a sale of the property after the giving of notice. Notice of a sale shall be given in the county where the lot is located. Notice of all sales under this subsection shall be given by publication once a week for three successive weeks in a newspaper published in the county or counties in which the lot is located. If the lot is located in more than one county, publication shall be made in all counties where the lot is located. The notice of sale must give the time, place, and terms of the sale, together with the description of the lot. If no newspaper is published in the county where the lot is located, the notice must be placed in a newspaper published in an adjoining county for three successive weeks.

(Act 2015-292, §12.)