A lien's priority or seniority over other liens placed against the title to the same property is determined by the date or chronological order in which it was recorded in the official records and the type of lien. For example, a mortgage or deed of trust lien recorded on August 25, 2004, would have priority over another mortgage or deed of trust lien recorded on August 28, 2004, against the same property because it would be in a first or senior position over the next lien recorded. However, in most states, property and special assessment tax liens to include liens placed against real property for unpaid governmental services have priority over previously recorded mortgage or deed of trust liens. Judgment liens, mechanics' liens, and even IRS tax liens do not have seniority over previously recorded mortgage or deed of trust liens and are considered subordinate or junior liens.
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