TAX DEED APPLICATION PROCESS


Tax certificates are interest bearing liens. They convey no property rights.

The life of a tax certificate is 7 years from the date of issuance. In the event of a bankruptcy filing, the life of a tax certificate may be extended. If no action is taken by the tax certificate holder during the 7 year period, and the taxes remain unpaid, the tax certificate is cancelled due to the Statute of Limitation, which will result in the loss of your investment.

In accordance with Florida Statute 197.432 (14,15), a tax certificate holder shall not contact the owner of the property until two (2) years have elapsed from April 1 of the year of issuance of the tax certificate.

After two (2) years have elapsed from April 1st of the year of issuance of the tax certificate, the holder of a tax certificate may apply for a tax deed.

Prior to applying for tax deed foreclosure it is advisable to check for any existing liens on the property. F.S.197.552 provides that unsatisfied governmental liens shall survive the issuance of a tax deed.

To apply for a tax deed the tax deed applicant shall:
  1. Submit a signed application.
  2. Pay all amounts required to redeem all outstanding tax certificates not owned by the applicant.
  3. Pay current taxes, if due.
  4. Pay an application fee.
  5. Pay a Clerk of the Court fee (if applicable).
Note: All fees are subject to change at any time.

At a later date, the Clerk of the Circuit Court will advise the applicant of the sale date and additional costs, which the applicant must pay. These costs include the advertising cost, mailing costs and the Sheriff�s fees to serve notice(s). The sale will take place approximately two (2) months following the notification. The property will be sold to the highest bidder at a public sale.

For properties without homestead exemption on the current tax roll, the opening bid will include all costs and delinquent taxes plus interest. For properties with homestead exemption on the current tax roll, the opening bid shall include, in addition to all costs and delinquent taxes plus interest, an amount equal to one-half (1/2) of the assessed value of the homestead property as listed on the current year�s tax roll.

In the event the non-homestead property does not sell, the applicant is required to take deed to the property. If the homestead property does not sell, the applicant must pay the additional one-half (1/2) assessed value in order to take deed to the property. If the applicant elects not to pay the additional amount, the property will be entered onto the List of Lands Available for Taxes.

Property not purchased from the List of Lands within 3 years will escheat (revert) to the county and the applicant's investment is lost.