Category: Tax Deed

Investa Services of GA, LLC Tax Execution Case

Anyone who deals with unpaid taxes in Georgia knows that Investa and/or entities affiliated with Investa play a significant role. A class action was filed against, among others, Investa. In this lawsuit, Investa et al. was accused of improperly levying on tax executions for delinquent property taxes based on initial tax assessments later reduced via a property tax appeal.

The trial court dismissed the lawsuit and an appeal was filed. See B.C. Grand, LLC v. Investa Services of GA, LLC, A19A1297 (GA Ct of App, October 29, 2019). On appeal, the court ruled in favor of Investa et al., finding that  B.C. Grand “failed to allege that the [Tax] Commissioner cancelled the tax executions or that they are void as a matter of law based on the post-issuance reduction in the tax assessment.” Because B.C. Grand failed to pay the taxes at issue while pursuing its appeal of the assessment and instead waited to receive a refund (which it did receive), the full amounts owed remained valid. And because B.C. Grand failed to plead the executions were void as a matter of law or were cancelled, Investa et al. were authorized to levy the executions at the full purchase price amount. Chalk one up for Investa.

Tax Deed Services For Owners of Tax Deeds

If you own a tax deed, we offer two services related to tax deeds: (1) barring the right of redemption and (2) quiet title.

(1) Barring right to redeem. In Georgia, you are entitled to bar the right to redeem any time after one year has passed from the tax sale. Barment notices need to be sent to the owner of the property at the time of the tax sale and to any other party that holds an interest in the property. To identify who needs to get notice, we need to do a title examination. Below are our fees. 

We are normally willing to charge a fixed fee (depending on the circumstances of the tax deed) plus expenses. Expenses include title search, publication, and sheriff’s service. We don’t know for sure how much expenses are going to be, but the average is around $600.

(2) Quiet Title Against All the World. This is done after the barment is complete in order to obtain marketable title. A quiet title involves filing a lawsuit in the Superior Court of the county where the property is located. On these, we charge attorney’s fees on an hourly basis. Our hourly fee is $300 per hour and we require a retainer (exact amount depends on the situation). Normally, the attorney’s fees are about between $1,500 and $2,500, but like any lawsuit, we can’t quote an exact amount because the time required varies from case to case. In a quiet title, the court will appoint a special master: a special master is a local attorney who reviews the case and gives a recommendation to the court regarding title. The special master will cost an additional $1,500-2,500 (this amount is approximate). Court costs are an additional $500 (filing fee is approximately $250 and service on each defendant is $50).

(3) Adverse Possession: If you have adversely possessed the property for more than four years, you don’t have to do the first step (barment). Adverse possession means you have openly and continuously possessed the property (i.e, you or a tenant were actually in the property) and no one who owned an interest in the property objected.