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should you routinely file a UCC-1
August 22, 2018
should you routinely file a UCC-1
    When we lease, using the Commercial All In One Lease or Fire All in One Lease, should we we submitting a UCC-1 on the subscriber until the Lease Agreement is terminated? 
    The Standard Form Agreements provide for a Security Interest in the subscribers certain assets. This designates the assets as collateral for the subscriber's obligation to make the payments required in the Agreement. The Agreement is the actual "security agreement" and the UCC-1 is the "Financing Statement" that gets filed with the appropriate governmental office [usually the state's Department of State]. 
    While the UCC-1 is not intended as a way to establish or retain "title" to equipment, we often hear that new occupants or owners of property complain that they didn't know the alarm system was leased and owned by the alarm company because no UCC-1 was found. The UCC-1 would put the new owner on notice that a lien existed. I suppose you could write on the UCC-1 that the collateral was actually leased and owned by the Secured Party [alarm company], but that's not really the intended purpose of the UCC-1.
    As a practical matter you won't be able to file the UCC-1 with every leased or sold system. A filing of the UCC-1 may affect your subscriber's credit rating and may also violate your subscriber's prior, or future, loan documents. A UCC-1 could violate the terms of lease. 
    So how do you warn subsequent occupants that you own the equipment; that it was never sold. You can take a shot with the UCC-1, but I'd wait until the subscriber defaulted or you learn that a sale of the premises is imminent. You could and should put stickers on the equipment, signs and decals, identifying the equipment as leased. 
    Be careful not to provide any services to an occupant of the premises other than your subscriber unless a new contract is signed by that occupant. 

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301
516 747 6700