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Missouri

Summary: In every county all lands and lots on which taxes are delinquent and unpaid are subject to sale to discharge the lien for the delinquent and unpaid taxes as provided for in this chapter on the fourth Monday in August of each year (Sec. 140.150). The minimum bid is the amount of delinquent property taxes, interest, penalties, and costs for the least quantity of any tract shall be considered the purchaser of such quantity (Sec.
140.190) If there is no minimum bid then the tracts of land or lots shall be again offered for sale, at the next sale of delinquent lands and lots as in this law provided, if the lands or lots are at that time delinquent. (Sec.140.240). After payment shall have been made the county collector shall give the tax sale purchaser a certificate in writing, to be designated as a certificate of purchase (Sec. 140.290). However, if the property is not sold at the first two auctions, a purchaser at a third or later auction receives a deed to the property that is subject to a 90 day right of redemption (Sec. 140.250).

Law: Missouri Revised Statutes, Chapter 140, “Collection of Delinquent Taxes Generally,” and Chapter 141, “Delinquent Taxes -- First Class Counties and St. Louis City.”

Contact: County tax collector (Sec. 140.010). “All real estate upon which the taxes remain unpaid on the first day of January, annually, are delinquent, and the county collector shall enforce the lien of the state thereon.”

Interest Rate: 10% per annum (8% on subsequent taxes) (Sec. 140.340). “The owner or occupant of any land or lot sold for taxes, or any other persons having an interest therein, may redeem the same at any time during the one year next ensuing, in the following manner: By paying to the county collector, for the use of the purchaser, his heirs or assigns, the full sum of the purchase money named in his certificate of purchase and
all the cost of the sale together with interest at the rate specified in such certificate, not to exceed ten percent annually, with all subsequent taxes which have been paid thereon by the purchaser, his heirs or assigns, with interest at the rate of eight percent per annum on such taxes subsequently paid, and in addition thereto the person redeeming any land shall pay the costs incident to entry of recital of such redemption.”

Auction Type: Tax Lien Certificate (Sec. 140.290). “After payment shall have been made the county collector shall give the purchaser a certificate in writing, to be designated as a certificate of purchase.” In addition (Sec.140.250), “A purchaser at any sale subsequent to the third offering of any land or lots shall be entitled to the immediate issuance and delivery of a collector’s deed and there shall be no period of redemption from such sales.”

Bidding Procedure: Premium bid / highest bid. The Bidder offers to pay the minimum sum for the least quantity of land (Sec. 140.190). At third auctions, the property is sold to the highest bidder subject to a 90 day redemption period. At subsequent auctions the property is sold to the highest bidder (Sec. 140.250).

Costs: As stated in Missouri statute the fees payable by the purchaser include the cost of printing the delinquent property tax list (Sec. 140.170) and a 50-cent fee for the issuance of the certificate of purchase (Sec.
140.290).

Redemption Period: One (1) year (Sec. 140.340). Generally, the owner or occupant of any land or lot sold for taxes, or any other persons having an interest therein, may redeem the same at any time during the one year next ensuing (Sec. 140.340). A special redemption period applies for infants, incapacitated and or disabled persons (Sec. 140.350).

Deed Assigned at Foreclosure to: Following compliance with certain notice requirements, more specifically, Any person purchasing property at a delinquent land tax auction shall not acquire the deed to the real estate, as provided for in section 140.420, until the person meets with the following requirement or until such person makes affidavit that a title search has revealed no publicly recorded deed of trust, mortgage, lease, lien or claim on the real estate. At least ninety days prior to the date when a purchaser is authorized to acquire the deed, the purchaser shall notify any person who holds a publicly recorded deed of trust, mortgage, lease, lien or claim upon that real estate of the latter person’s right to redeem such person’s publicly recorded security or claim. Notice shall be sent by certified mail to any such person, including one who was the publicly recorded owner of the property sold at the delinquent land tax auction previous to such sale, at such person’s last known available address. Failure of the purchaser to comply with this provision shall result in such purchaser’s loss of all interest in the real estate. If any real estate is purchased at a third-offering tax auction and has a publicly recorded deed of trust, mortgage, lease, lien or claim upon the real estate, the purchaser of said property at a third-offering tax auction shall notify anyone with a publicly recorded deed of trust, mortgage, lease, lien or claim upon the real estate pursuant to this section. Once the purchaser has notified the county collector by affidavit that proper notice has been given, anyone with a publicly recorded deed of trust, mortgage, lease, lien or claim upon the property shall have ninety days to redeem said property or be forever barred from redeeming said property. (Sec. 140.405), If no person shall redeem the lands sold for taxes within two years from the sale, at the expiration thereof, and on production of certificate of purchase, and in case the certificate covers only a part of a tract or lot of land, then accompanied with a survey or description of such part, made by the county surveyor, the collector of the county in which the sale of such lands took place shall execute to the purchaser, his heirs or assigns, in the name of the state, a conveyance of the real estate so sold, which shall vest in the grantee an absolute estate in fee simple, subject, however, to all claims thereon for unpaid taxes except such unpaid taxes existing at time of the purchase of said lands and the lien for which taxes was inferior to the lien for taxes for which said tract or lot of land was sold (Sec. 140.420).

Notes: Charter Counties: According to (Sec. 18 (a)) of the Missouri Constitution any ‘county having more than 85,000 inhabitants, according to the census of the United States, may frame and adopt and amend a charter for its own government’. In addition, counties ‘which adopt or which have adopted a charter or constitutional form of government shall be a separate class of counties outside of the classification system established under section 8 of this article’.

In conclusion, any county with a population of 85,000 or more may adopt a different process for the collection of delinquent property taxes. Therefore, prior to purchase, contact county officials for the specifics on how delinquent property taxes are handled in that specific county.
Sale to Non-Residents: According to (Sec. 140.190) no ‘bid shall be received from any person not a resident of the state of Missouri until such person shall file with said collector an agreement in writing consenting to the jurisdiction of the circuit court of the county in which such sale shall be made, and also filing with such collector an appointment of some citizen of said county as agent of said purchaser, and consenting that service of process on such agent shall give such court jurisdiction to try and determine any suit growing out of or connected with such sale for taxes’.
Subsequent Taxes: According to (Sec. 140.440) the purchaser of the tax lien certificate must pay all subsequent taxes ‘that have accrued thereon since the issuance of said certificate’ before ‘being entitled to apply for deed’.

Furthermore, ‘any purchaser that shall suffer a subsequent tax to become delinquent, such first purchaser shall forfeit all liens on such lands so purchased.’ A purchaser that permits ‘a subsequent certificate to issue on the same property’ will receive a notice instructing the investor to ‘surrender said certificate’ to the county tax collector. At that point the investor will receive what he or she paid to purchase ‘shall be paid without interest to such holder of the certificate’.

Applying for Tax Deed: According to (Sec. 140.410) the purchaser must apply for a tax deed ‘within two years
from the date of said sale’ of the tax lien certificate. Failure by the purchaser to apply for a tax deed within the time specified in Sec. 140.410 ‘the amount due such purchaser shall cease to be a lien on said lands so purchased so purchased as herein provided’.

Missouri Contacts
number of Counties: 115

Buchanan County
411 Jules Street
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Saint Joseph, MO 64501-1731
Phone: (816) 271-1503
www.co.buchanan.mo.us

Boone County
801 East Walnut
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Columbia, MO 65201
Phone: (573) 886-4305
www.showmeboone.com

Clay County
Courthouse Square
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Liberty, MO 64068-2365
Phone: (816) 792-7733
www.claycogov.com

Franklin County
300 East Main Street
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Union, MO 63084-1675
Phone: (636) 583-6355
www.franklinmo.org

Greene County
940 Boonville Avenue
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Springfield, MO 65802-3802
Phone: (417) 868-4000
www.greenecountymo.org

Jackson County
415 East 12th Street
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Kansas City, MO 64106-2706
Phone: (816) 881-3333
www.co.jackson.mo.us

Jasper County
302 S. Main Street
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Carthage, MO 64836-1621
Phone: (417) 358-0421
www.jaspercounty.org

Jefferson County
P.O. Box 100
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Hillsboro, MO 63050-0100
Phone: (636) 797-5555
www.jeffcomo.org

St. Charles County
100 N. Third Street
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Saint Charles, MO 63301-2854
Phone: (636) 949-7520
www.win.org/county/sccg.htm

St. Louis County
41 South Central Avenue
Delinquent Property Tax Division
Clayton, MO 63105-1719
Phone: (314) 615-5432
www.co.st-louis.mo.us