Delinquent taxes and other charges against real property may result in the taxes being sold as a lien against that property. A tax lien upon real property is secured by that property and is not personal against the owner. It remains a lien upon the property regardless of the individual or entity in ownership.
Once taxes are sold as lien, the owner of the property or other interested party in the property, such as a lender, will usually have a period to redeem the tax lien ranging from 6 months to 2 years. If the owner fails to redeem the tax lien within this period, a tax lien holder may choose to apply for a tax deed or commence a foreclosure proceeding, depending on the jurisdiction.
If a tax lien holder elects to commence a foreclosure action, the objective of that action is to sell the property at public auction if the owner does not redeem the tax lien and use the proceeds to pay the tax lien. Once a foreclosure action is commenced, the owner of the property still has a right of redemption which it can exercise by satisfying the tax lien and removing the property from foreclosure at any time up until the property is sold at public auction. However, once the foreclosure auction occurs, the owner’s right of redemption ends and he or she can no longer redeem the property and any interest they have in the property ends. Instead, the property is now owned by the purchaser at public auction.
The duration of each tax lien foreclosure action from inception to conclusion can vary on a case by case basis depending on the jurisdiction and the circumstances of each matter. The Law Office of Thomas P. Malone, PLLC handles tax lien foreclosure actions within the five boroughs of New York City.