Georgia Court of Appeals affirms that tax sales are not arm’s length bona fide sales

In a June 16, 2015 decision, the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed the Newton County Superior Court’s decision that tax sales are not arm’s length bona fide sales and are therefore not entitled to the one-year purchase price freeze allowed under O.C.G.A. 48-5-2.  This is an important decision for all counties in Georgia.  The question of how to treat tax sales has been at issue since the overhaul of Title 48 in 2011.  Different counties handled it different ways.  In Newton County where there are as many as 200+ tax sales per year tax sale values have a significant impact on the overall tax digest.   A copy of the court opinion is below.  I served as counsel for Newton County.

Court of Appeals decision in Ballard v Newton County

 

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