Fighting for every penny of your Florida Tax Deed Surplus is what I do. One of the most difficult things to fight against are Governmental Liens. These liens must typically be paid off by the surplus unless certain exceptions prevent them from being paid off. One exception is that claims for the surplus must be filed within 120 days after the notice of surplus funds was mailed out. Another exception is that if the property was homestead and you, the prior owner, plan to use the proceeds of the Florida Tax Deed Surplus to invest in another homestead property.
The first exception is based strictly on Florida Statute 197.582(7). This statute states, “A holder of a recorded governmental lien, other than a federal government lien or ad valorem tax lien, must file a request for disbursement of surplus funds within 120 days after the mailing of the notice of surplus funds.” This means that if the request for disbursement of the surplus funds was made by a local governmental entity (i.e. County Clerk of Court) beyond that 120 days, they are effectively barred from receiving those surplus funds. However, if it is a federal government agency, they can make a claim at just about any time. I currently have a case where the County Clerk made a claim over 400 days after the mailing of the notice of surplus funds. They are not a federal governmental agency and therefore their claim should be barred.
The next exception is for homestead. This exception is protected by Article X, Section 4, of the Florida Constitution. It provides in part, that if the property is homestead, then no judgments or decrees shall be a lien on the property. Additionally, Florida Statute 162.09(3), states that no lien can be created to foreclose on real property which is a “homestead” under Article X, Section 4 of the Florida Constitution. What this boils down to is that the homeowner must have the good faith intention to reinvest the proceeds of the Florida Tax Deed Surplus into a new homestead property. This can usually be shown to the court by signing an affidavit. Just keep in mind that an affidavit is a legal document and you have to be careful not to perjure yourself.
By looking very closely at these exceptions, along with a few others, I can help you to maximize your Florida Tax Deed Surplus funds. This is something that should only be handled by a qualified and experienced Surplus Funds Attorney, like me. The case I mentioned above where the Clerk of Court filed their request over 400 days late, my client had originally hired a third-party surplus company. They didn’t seem to know what to do with the case or how to handle it. Luckily for my new client, the third-party surplus company let him out of his agreement with them. He then hired me, and I am working very hard to maximize his surplus funds.
If you have Florida Tax Deed Surplus funds from your property being sold at a Tax Deed Auction, give me a call for a Free Consultation. I can go over everything with you and take a look at all of the liens to see if they are valid or exempt based on your homestead status. I can also advise as to whether any claims for surplus by any of the lienholders were timely claimed. It is highly important to hire an experienced Florida Tax Deed Surplus Attorney who knows the law and can help you get your maximum surplus. I handle Foreclosure Sale Surplus and Tax Deed Surplus cases in every County in the state of Florida. And I don’t get paid unless you do.