Florida House Bill 1383

Florida Sets 120-Day Deadline on Tax Deed Sale Surplus Claims
By: Travis Halstead, Baker Donelson

Earlier this month, House Bill 1383, which amends Florida's tax deed statutes, was passed in both houses of the Florida legislature and now awaits the Governor's signature. While the amendments generally provide more guidance with respect to the county clerks' responsibilities and handling of tax deed sales and required notices, they also introduce a significant change surrounding tax deed sale surplus claims.The biggest impact upon mortgage holders with an interest in collecting excess proceeds from tax deed sales is a new time limitation for making any such claims. Revised Fla. Stat. Sect. 197.582(3) creates a 120-day deadline for lienholders to file a claim. The 120-day period begins on the date stated in the clerk's notice of excess proceeds, which is required to be sent to all lienholders of record. Prior to this amendment, the only deadline for lienholders to submit claims was the clerk's option to remit excess proceeds to the State if no claims were made within one year from the date of the notice of excess proceeds.