ILNews

Tax sale stands even though mortgage holder not notified

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

The Indiana Supreme Court upheld 20 years of precedent in finding that a county auditor is obligated to notify a mortgage holder of an impending property sale only when that mortgage holder specifically requests a notice.

In M&M Investment Group, LLC v. Ahlemeyer Farms, Inc. and Monroe Bank, 03S04-1211-CC-645, the Supreme Court reversed the trial court and remanded. It ruled the requirement in Indiana Code 6-1.1-24.3(b) that a mortgage holder annually request a notice of a tax sale does not violate the 14th Amendment’s due process clause.

Monroe Bank, the mortgagee of the Ahlemeyer Farms, did not know the property was included in the Bartholomew County tax sale until after the buyer, M&M Investment, notified the bank.

Challenging the sale, the bank argued the statute mandating the mortgagee first request a notice of a tax sale before the county is required to provide a copy violates the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

The bank asserted that under Jones v. Flowers, 547 U.S. 220 (2006) and Mennonite Bd. Of Missions v. Adams, 462 U.S. 791 (1983), due process requires the government to provide pre-tax sale notice by mail or personal service regardless of whether the mortgagee has requested it or not.

The Supreme Court was not persuaded to overturn two decades of precedent. The court did not want the state to take additional burdensome steps. It also questioned whether obligating the state to do more would be beneficial in today’s era of mortgaged-backed securities and trading.

Writing for the court, Justice Steven David held, “…Monroe Bank’s apparent alternative – that a county auditor be required to comb the files of the recorder’s office to see if a mortgage is recorded for a tax-delinquent property, assess whether the mortgage is still valid, and then determine whether the mortgage accurately reflects the mortgagee’s identity and address – remains unnecessary for two reasons: it would unreasonably tip the scales of our analysis by imposing too great a burden on the State, and the burdens this approach would impose would not result in a greater likelihood of successful notification.”

 

 

 

 
 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. Just an aside, but regardless of the outcome, I 'm proud of Judge William Hughes. He was the original magistrate on the Home place issue. He ruled for Home Place, and was primaried by Brainard for it. Their tool Poindexter failed to unseat Hughes, who won support for his honesty and courage throughout the county, and he was reelected Judge of Hamilton County's Superior Court. You can still stand for something and survive. Thanks, Judge Hughes!

  2. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  3. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  4. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  5. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

ADVERTISEMENT