Florida Tax Deed Sale Surplus Funds: How a Lawyer Can Save You Thousands of Dollars

I have blogged multiple times over the last few months about Florida Foreclosure Surplus Funds. However, in this blog, I want to talk about a different beast, Florida Tax Deed Surplus Funds.

What is a Tax Deed Sale?

A Tax Deed sale is much like a foreclosure sale, except instead of failing to pay a mortgage, one has failed to pay taxes. Therefore, the County sets the property for auction in a tax deed sale. A third party comes and bids on the property and the highest bid wins.

The main difference between a mortgage foreclosure sale and a tax deed sale is that most people owe significantly less in taxes and therefore, there are generally much higher surplus amounts in the tax deed sales.

Now, if there are surplus funds from a tax deed sale, other lien holders can come and try to make a claim to these funds. If there is any dispute as to who is entitled to the funds, the Clerk of the County initiates an Interpleader action in order for the Court to determine who is entitled to the surplus. This is a litigation matter that can take years if done improperly.

Why Retain a Lawyer for Recovering Tax Deed Surplus Funds?

So, one may ask, why should I get a lawyer to represent me in recovering Tax Deed Surplus Funds in Florida? Here are three reasons, based on my personal experience:

  1. Florida Tax Deed Sales Surplus funds can sometimes take years to recoup. This is because of a few reasons, albeit people (lawyers, pro se litigants) don’t know what they are doing and/or the Clerk is not usually in a hurry to disburse the funds. A lawyer that has experience in interpleader actions and tax deed surplus funds can help get the funds much faster than a pro se litigant or an inexperienced lawyer.
  2. Lienholders that are not entitled to funds may try and make a claim. I have seen lienholders try and trick the Clerk and/or the Court into thinking they are entitled to some money. I recently had a case in Osceola County where two lien holders made a claim on my client’s tax deed surplus funds. I was able to dispute the liens and get them extinguished. Therefore, my client got the full amount of the surplus funds, which was north of $50,000.00.
  3. Asset Recover Companies - STAY AWAY. So many of these companies are defrauding people into assigning over their entire interests for pennies on the dollar. This is because these third party companies lie and cheat people out of millions. Read my previous blog for more information on these asset recovery companies, but know that these companies are not lawyers and therefore do not have a code of ethics, via the Florida Bar, or lawyer experience. In my opinion, they will either defraud you out of money or will lose you a chance to recoup money because they are clueless. Further, tax deed surplus cases are much less regulated than foreclosure surplus cases. There are no statutes to protect people from being tricked in assigning their rights like there is with Florida Statute 45.033 in foreclosure surplus cases. Beware.

At the end of the day, an experienced Florida Tax Deed Surplus lawyer can help you get the funds faster, get more money through proper representation and holding off ill-advised lien holders, and actually provide ethical, legal representation in court.

Haynes Law Group will represent a former homeowner in any county in Florida in collecting Tax Deed Sale Surplus Funds! Call today for your free consultation.

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