Code Section Group

Food and Agricultural Code - FAC


  ( Division 20 enacted by Stats. 1967, Ch. 15. )

CHAPTER 6. Processors of Farm Products [55401 - 55922]

  ( Chapter 6 enacted by Stats. 1967, Ch. 15. )

ARTICLE 10.5. Liens on Livestock Sold or Delivered to Meatpackers [55701 - 55704]
  ( Article 10.5 added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 497. )


As used in this article, the following definitions shall apply:

(a) “Livestock” means any cattle, sheep, swine, goat, or any horse, mule, or other equine, whether living or dead.

(b) “Meatpacker” means an establishment where livestock are either slaughtered, the carcasses thereof are prepared, or meat is processed and where state or federal inspection is maintained.

(Added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 497.)


(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, any person who sells or furnishes livestock to a meatpacker, shall have a lien, not dependent upon possession, on the livestock and upon the identifiable proceeds and products thereof, for the unpaid part of the purchase price, or for the unpaid value of the livestock at the time of the transfer of possession if no purchase price has been agreed upon. The lien shall commence on the date of the transfer of possession of the livestock to the meatpacker and shall have priority over all other liens upon, and security interests in, the livestock and the identifiable proceeds and products thereof, without regard to the time of attachment or perfection of such other liens or security interests and shall remain a lien upon the livestock and the identifiable proceeds and products thereof notwithstanding sale, exchange, or other disposition thereof.

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (a), a buyer in the ordinary course of business, as that term is defined in paragraph (9) of subdivision (b) of Section 1201 of the Commercial Code, shall take free of such lien even though the buyer knows of the existence of the lien.

(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision (a), the lien shall cease to be of any force or effect after the expiration of 21 days from the date of delivery of the livestock unless a notice of lien is filed pursuant to subdivision (e), in which case the lien shall remain effective as long as such notice shall remain effective.

(d) No person shall have a lien pursuant to subdivision (a) to the extent that the person shall have made the livestock available to the meatpacker on credit terms.

(e) Any person selling or delivering livestock who claims a lien under this article shall file a statement with the Secretary of State and a copy thereof with the director, both within 21 days after delivery of the livestock to the meatpacker. The statement shall be in writing, verified by the oath of the person filing, and shall contain all of the following:

(1) The name and address of the person filing.

(2) A statement of the amount demanded by the person filing the statement after deducting all credits and offsets.

(3) The name and address of the meatpacker who received the livestock.

(4) A description of the livestock delivered to the meatpacker and the date of delivery.

(5) A statement that the amount claimed is a true and bona fide existing debt as of the date of the statement.

(6) A statement that the amount claimed is a true and bona fide existing debt as of the date on which payment was due for the livestock.

(f) Every statement that is filed shall be accompanied by the fees required by Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 9501) of Division 9 of the Commercial Code in the case of a financing statement not on the standard form and shall remain effective for a period of five years from the date of filing.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 254, Sec. 77. Effective January 1, 2007.)


Except as provided in this section, any lien created under Section 55702 shall continue in force for a period of five years from the date of filing of the notice of lien. The lien shall cease at the expiration of five years unless the claimant thereof, or his assignee, or successor in interest, brings suit to foreclose the lien, in which case the lien continues in force until such lien foreclosure suit is finally determined and closed. If such foreclosure proceeding is not prosecuted to trial within two years after the commencement thereof, the court may in its discretion dismiss the foreclosure suit.

The plaintiff in any such lien foreclosure suit may have the property upon which such lien subsists attached, as provided in the Code of Civil Procedure.

Any number of persons claiming liens under this article may join in the same action and when separate actions are commenced, the court may consolidate them. Whenever the sale of the property subject to any lien or liens provided for in this article, under the judgment or decree of foreclosure of such lien or liens, results in a deficiency of proceeds, the proceeds shall be divided pro rata among the lien claimants whose liens are established, regardless of the order in which the liens were created or the order in which the suits to foreclose same were commenced, and the judgment or decree for the deficiency may be docketed against the party personally liable therefor and his sureties, in the same manner and with the same effect as in actions for the foreclosure of security interests.

Nothing contained in this article shall be construed to impair or affect the right of any person to whom any debt may be due for livestock sold or delivered to maintain a personal action to recover such debt against the person liable therefor, or his sureties, either in connection with a suit to foreclose the lien or in a separate action. Any person bringing such personal action may take out a separate attachment therefor, notwithstanding his lien or the amount of his debt. In the affidavit to procure an attachment pursuant to such personal action, such person shall state that the attachment is made pursuant to this section, and the judgment, if any, obtained by the plaintiff in such personal action shall not be construed to impair or merge any lien held by such person under this article. Any money collected on such personal judgment shall be credited on the amount of such lien in any action brought to enforce the lien.

(Added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 497.)


Any rights or remedies granted to a person who sells livestock pursuant to this article, are in addition to any other rights or remedies provided by law for such seller.

(Added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 497.)

FACFood and Agricultural Code - FAC10.5