Why Do We Have Tax Sales in Louisiana?
Sternberg, Naccari & White has real estate attorneys experienced in litigating tax titles. In Louisiana, the tax assessor for each parish/county asses real property taxes on each piece of immovable property, and the sheriff is responsible for collecting those taxes that have been assessed.
If you or your mortgage company fail to pay the property taxes, they become delinquent. Depending on the date of delinquency, your property will be added to the list of properties to be sold at auction at a later date. Some of these auctions happen online, others happen in person.
Prior to the sale of the taxes, the sheriff will advertise the property tax delinquency and sale date twice in the Official Journal of the Parish. If the taxes remain unpaid before the sale date, the property taxes will be sold at auction. The Parish collects the payment at auction as the unpaid taxes and an investor then has a valid lien on the property that must be paid or the owner could lose his or her property.
My Taxes Were Sold at Auction. What Happens Now?
After the delinquent property tax notice by the sheriff to the owner(s) of record and the sheriff has twice advertised the delinquent taxes with notice of sale in the Official Journal (a newspaper), then the property taxes will be sold at auction.
If you think your property has been assessed an excessive or inaccurate amount, you are entitled to a designation or have applied for and received a designation and the assessor is either not acknowledging it or denied it and you want to challenge your tax assessment, please call one of our attorneys to discuss your options.
Can I get My Property Back?
Following the sale of the property taxes, there is a three-year redemptive period, wherein any owner can pay the property taxes to the parish/county to extinguish tax sale deed certificate. Call a Sternberg, Naccari & White attorney to discuss your options to redeem your sold property taxes.
What Will I have to Pay?
If you do not pay your taxes when they become due and owing, the penalty levied is a one (1%) percent interest of the total taxes due per month until that time the taxes have been paid in full. If the property taxes have been sold, in order to redeem the tax sale deed, an owner must pay a five (5%) percent penalty of sales price plus one (1%) percent penalty for each month the taxes remain unpaid following the purchase of the property taxes by a tax sale purchaser.
I Didn’t Get Notice that the Tax Sale Was Happening.
The biggest defense to tax sales is notice. Generally if you did not receive a certified mail letter informing you that the tax sale would be happening and that your property would be sold for non-payment of ad velorum property taxes, the lawyers at Sternberg, Naccari & White, LLC can help you annul the sale.
It’s Been More than Three Years. What Do I Do?
Following expiration of the redemption period, an interested party can no longer simply redeem the taxes by paying the Parish. Instead, the party must file a formal suit to annul the tax sale.
The lawyers at Sternberg, Naccari & White are your best resource for tax sales in Louisiana. Contact us today.