Delinquent Real Estate Taxes
Real estate taxes become delinquent April 1st of each year.
Delinquent taxes must be paid by cash, cashier's check or
money order. The date the payment is received in the Lake
County Tax Collector’s Office determines the amount
due. Florida Statutes require the Tax Collector to advertise
the delinquent parcels in a local newspaper once a week for
three consecutive weeks following the March 31st payment deadline.
Advertising and collection fees are added to the delinquent
Beginning on or before June 1st, the Tax Collector is required
by law to hold a Tax Certificate Sale. The certificates represent
liens on all unpaid real estate properties. The sale allows
citizens to buy certificates by paying off the tax debt that
is owed. The sale is conducted in reverse auction style with
participants bidding downward in ¼% increments starting
at 18%. The certificate is awarded to the lowest bidder.
A tax certificate, when purchased, becomes an enforceable
first lien against the real estate. The certificate holder
is actually paying the taxes for a property owner in exchange
for a competitive bid rate of return on his/her investment.
In order to remove the lien, the property owner must pay the
Tax Collector all delinquent taxes plus accrued interest,
penalties and advertising fees. The Tax Collector then notifies
the certificate holder of any certificates redeemed, and a
refund check is issued to the certificate holder.
A tax certificate is valid for seven years from the date
of issuance. The holder may apply for a tax deed when two
or more years have elapsed since the date of delinquency.
If the property owner fails to pay the tax debt, the property
tax deed is sold at public auction.
Tangible Personal Property Tax
Tangible Personal Property Taxes become delinquent April
1st of each year at which time a 1.5- percent fee per month
is added to the bill. Within 45 days after the tangible personal
property taxes become delinquent, the Tax Collector is required
by law to advertise a list of delinquent taxpayers one time
in a local newspaper. Advertising costs are added to the delinquent
Pursuant to Florida Statutes, Tax Warrants are issued prior
to April 30th of the next year on all unpaid tangible personal
property taxes. Within 30 days after the warrants are prepared,
the Tax Collector applies to the Circuit Court for an order
directing levy and seizure of the property for the amount
of unpaid taxes and costs.
Any changes to the tax roll (name, address, location, assessed
value) must be processed through the Property
Appraiser’s Office, (352) 253-2150.