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(1) In this section, “valid prior lien” means a purchase money real estate mortgage that is recorded before the lien is filed under this section, including any extension or refinancing of that purchase money mortgage, or an equivalent security interest, or a 2nd or subsequent mortgage for home improvement or repair that is recorded before the lien is filed under this section, including any extension or refinancing of that 2nd or subsequent mortgage.
(2)(a) Before incurring expenses under s. 292.11 or 292.31(1), (3) or (7) with respect to a property, the department shall provide to the current owner of the property and to any mortgagees of record a notice containing all of the following:
1. A brief description of the property for which the department expects to incur expenses under s. 292.11 or 292.31(1), (3) or (7).
2. A brief description of the types of activities that the department expects may be conducted at the property under s. 292.11 or 292.31(1), (3) or (7).
3. A statement that the property owner could be liable for the expenses incurred by the department.
4. A statement that the department could file a lien against the property to recover the expenses incurred by the department.
5. An explanation of whom to contact in the department to discuss the matter.
(b) The department shall provide notice under par. (a) by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the property owner and to each mortgagee of record at the addresses listed on the recorded documents. If the property owner is unknown or if a mailed notice is returned undelivered, the department shall provide the notice by publication thereof as a class 3 notice under ch. 985.
(c) The failure to provide the notice or include information required under this subsection does not impair the department's ability to file a lien or to seek to establish the property owner's liability for the expenses incurred by the department.
(d) No notice under this subsection is necessary in circumstances in which entry onto the property without prior notice is authorized under s. 292.11(8).
(3) Any expenditures made by the department under s. 292.11 or 292.31(1), (3) or (7) shall constitute a lien upon the property for which expenses are incurred if the department files the lien with the register of deeds in the county in which the property is located. A lien under this section shall be superior to all other liens that are or have been filed against the property, except that if the property is residential property, as defined in s. 895.52(1)(i), the lien may not affect any valid prior lien on that residential property.
(4)(a) Before filing a lien under sub. (3), the department shall give the owner of the property for which the expenses are incurred a notice of its intent to file the lien, as provided in this subsection.
(b) The notice required under par. (a) shall provide all of the following:
1. A statement of the purpose of the lien.
2. A brief description of the property to be affected by the lien.
3. A statement of the expenses incurred by the department.
4. The date on or after which the lien will be filed.
(c) The department shall serve the notice required in par. (a) on the property owner at least 60 days before filing the lien. The notice shall be provided by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the property owner and to each mortgagee of record at the addresses listed on the recorded documents. If the property owner is unknown or if a mailed notice is returned undelivered, the department shall provide the notice by publication thereof as a class 3 notice under ch. 985.
(d) In the foreclosure of any lien filed under this subsection, ch. 846 shall control as far as applicable unless otherwise provided in this subsection. All persons who may be liable for the expenses incurred by the department may be joined as defendants. The judgment shall adjudge the amount due the department, and shall direct that the property, or so much of the property as is necessary, be sold to satisfy the judgment, and that the proceeds be brought into court with the report of sale to abide the order of the court. If the sum realized at the sale is insufficient after paying the costs of the action and the costs of making the sale, the court shall determine the liability of the defendants for the remaining unreimbursed expenses and costs.
(e) This subsection does not apply if the lien is filed after the department obtains a judgment against the property owner and the lien is for the amount of the judgment.
Cite this article: FindLaw.com - Wisconsin Statutes Environmental Regulation (Ch. 280 to 299) § 292.81. Notice; lien - last updated January 01, 2018 | https://codes.findlaw.com/wi/environmental-regulation-ch-280-to-299/wi-st-292-81/
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