8foot7 wrote: Swimmer wrote:
8foot7 wrote:I still think the best option in this situation is to simply stop paying the taxes and let the municipality sell the home out from under all 5 of you.
Does non payment of taxes adversely affect ones credit rating?
Also, going this route could take a lot of time, I think, while you still have liability, utilities, general maintenance, etc.
A partition suit could also take a lot of time and would also not eliminate liability, utilities, maintenance, and the like. It's certainly not a perfect answer, but to my mind I haven't seen a better one proposed.
Suing your family should be the nuclear option. I don't think there's a credit hit for having a tax lien, but even if there is, I'd probably take it over suing my family unless there were truly no better alternative.
Not paying real estate taxes is a risky play. I would think the keepers would not let this happen if they are primarily interested in keeping and using the property unless they really want to shoot themselves in the foot and head. And the sellers, if one of their interests was to capture some value in the property, would see that interest evaporate in a tax lien sale. This is not as efficient as you appear to think it would be especially as compared to a partition suit and sale. Most states provide the delinquent tax payer with redemption rights for a prescribed period, in some cases, as long as 2 years; which means the delinquent tax payer could pay his unpaid real estate taxes and re-acquire the property sold to someone at the tax sale! And if you're a bidder at the sale, you'll likely to bid $1 plus the unpaid taxes for the property, thus wiping out any "equity" or value in the property that the prior owners had in it.
This play also sounds transparently spiteful, not likely to advance anyone's financial interests in the short or long term. And tax liens do show up on credit reports, at least Federal income tax liens do so.
A partition suit/sale would not be a suit against the family; it's really a suit against the property (though you would list and name identified owners or stakeholders in the property as defendants along with the property itself). It would seem to me to be far more efficient, expeditious and yield the best financial benefit to the parties than a tax sale (save for the keepers wanting to keep the property because they're interest is in keeping their common ownership and not having cash as a substitute for it).
The nuclear option is the best option if the parties are so entrenched in their respective positions -- no need to mediate if positions are diametrically in opposition to each other and no one wants to move to the other side. A word about the keepers, as I think we have tended to side in this forum with the sellers, in portraying the sellers as irrational or depriving the sellers of their inheritance. The keepers just want to keep, which they are legally entitled to do so -- it's how Mom, intentionally or unintentionally, played her hand for her children. They are getting exactly what was designed for them -- it's really the sellers in wanting to sell who are upsetting the design here.