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Chambliss Attorney McVeagh Prevails in $100,000+ Property Tax Trial

03.30.2016

Chambliss Law Firm’s Alex McVeagh successfully represented his client in a state chancery court lawsuit to set aside a county’s sale of his client’s property at a delinquent property tax sale.  Alex tried the case in February, but it was taken under advisement. Yesterday, the decision was announced to set aside the sale of property worth more than $111,000, which had been sold for $3,500.  Alex was assisted by fellow Chambliss team members Bruce Bailey, Mike St. Charles, Martha Culp, Linda Higgins, and Dana Carter.

While Chambliss’ client was working in and out of the country as a member of the United States Air Force, the county alleged that the client failed to pay all of his property taxes, despite the client’s attempts to pay his property taxes in full. In addition, the county sent tax bills and the notice of a pending tax sale for delinquent taxes to out-of-date addresses, despite being notified of the client’s correct address. Although the notices had been returned as undeliverable each year over a period of years, the county continued sending notices to the same incorrect address. Alex sued to set aside the tax sale for lack of sufficient notice under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, as well as applicable state and federal case law. Yesterday, the Chancellor agreed with Alex's position and set-aside the tax sale, restoring the property to Chambliss’ client.

Alex cross-examined a number of witnesses, including the County Tax Assessor, the County Trustee, and the Chancellor's own Clerk & Master about the county’s tax collection practices and its tax sale procedures. In the course of these examinations, the proof showed that the county failed to meet its heightened constitutional and statutory burden before selling the client’s property.

We congratulate Alex and the team for prevailing in the Chancery Court trial!