When an installment loan has been paid in full, the proof that it's been paid lies in the lien release. The lender or lien holder usually provides this automatically to the borrower at the end of the deal term. However, you may have to request it if you're completing a short sale, foreclosure or other distressed sale or negotiation.
Contact your lien holder's customer service department and request information on securing a lien release.
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Write down the address, telephone and fax number of the appropriate department or person.
Write the department to request the release. Include the account name and number clearly at the top.
Request the release in the first paragraph. Example: "I am writing to request a lien release for account #12345 in the name of John Smith. The principal balance was $25,000 and the final payment was made in the amount of $500 on March 1, 2011. The terms of the loan have been satisfied."
Sign and mail the letter via return receipt.
Follow up with your lender to verify receipt. If your lender was a bank that was taken over by the FDIC, contact the FDIC for lien release information.
If your home was foreclosed or sold in a short sale, a lien release protects you against a future lawsuit by the lender to collect the forgiven proceeds.
Things You'll Need
Contact information of the lienholder's lien release department, including telephone, fax, and address
Loan account number
Loan principal balance