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In re County Collector

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Second District

December 23, 2014

In re APPLICATION OF THE COUNTY COLLECTOR, For Judgment and Order of Sale Against Land and Lots Returned Delinquent for Nonpayment of General Taxes for the Year 2008 and Prior Years (James Wolfe, Petitioner-Appellant,
v.
De Kalb County Collector, Respondent-Appellee)

Appeal from the Circuit Court of De Kalb County. No. 12-TX-50. Honorable William P. Brady, Judge, Presiding.

Reversed and remanded.

SYLLABUS

In an appeal arising from the failure of petitioner, the purchaser of the unpaid property taxes, to get his money back after the trial court refused to declare a sale in error when petitioner's office made a typographical error and listed the extended redemption date as a Sunday, the appellate court remanded the cause to the trial court to determine whether a bona fide effort was made by petitioner to substantially comply with the statutory requirements for getting a tax deed and was therefore entitled to a declaration of a sale in error and the return of his money.

Terry J. Carter, Eric H. Wudtke, Carter Legal Group, P.C., of Chicago, for Appellant.

Richard H. Schmack, State's Attorney, of Sycamore (Stephanie Klein, Assistant State's Attorney, of counsel), for Appellee.

PRESIDING JUSTICE SCHOSTOK delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justices Jorgensen and Birkett concurred in the judgment and opinion.

OPINION

SCHOSTOK, PRESIDING JUSTICE

Page 713

[¶1] This appeal concerns a tax purchaser, the petitioner, James Wolfe, who was not able to get his money back from the respondent, the De Kalb County collector, after the trial court refused to declare a sale in error. On appeal, the petitioner argues that the trial court erred in not granting him relief. We reverse and remand for additional proceedings.

[¶2] BACKGROUND

[¶3] This case concerns 65.2 acres of unimproved farmland in De Kalb County. The property owner failed to pay the 2008 real estate taxes on that property in a timely fashion. On October 26, 2009, Oak Park Investments, Inc., purchased the unpaid taxes for $314,367.39 and received a tax certificate. The tax certificate was subsequently assigned to the petitioner.

[¶4] On November 23, 2009, the petitioner filed a document with the county clerk's office indicating that the redemption period was extended to April 29, 2012. The notice incorrectly indicated that the original sale date was October 29, 2009.

[¶5] On April 24, 2012, the petitioner filed an additional extension, extending the redemption period to September 18, 2012. On June 27, 2012, the petitioner filed a final extension, extending the redemption period to October 26, 2012. Also on June 27, ...


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