281.173 Five-week redemption period for certain abandoned properties.
Subdivision 1. Application. This section applies if at any time after the tax sale as provided in section 280.01 has occurred but before notice of expiration of time for redemption has been given, a court order is entered reducing to five weeks the redemption period during which the owner, the owner's personal representatives and assigns, or any other person holding an interest in the premises, may redeem the premises in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
Subd. 2. Summons and complaint. Any city, housing and redevelopment authority, port authority, or economic development authority, in which the premises are located may commence an action in district court to reduce the period otherwise allowed for redemption under this chapter. The action must be commenced by the filing of a complaint, naming as defendants the record fee owners or the owner's personal representative, or the owner's heirs as determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, contract for deed purchasers, mortgagees, assigns of any of the above, the taxpayers as shown on the records of the county auditor, the Internal Revenue Service of the United States and the Revenue Department of the state of Minnesota if tax liens against the owners or contract for deed purchasers have been recorded or filed; and any other person the plaintiff determines should be made a party. The action shall be filed in district court for the county in which the premises are located. The complaint must identify the premises by legal description. The complaint must allege (1) that the premises are abandoned, (2) that the tax judgment sale pursuant to section 280.01 has been made, and (3) notice of expiration of the time for redemption has not been given.
The complaint must request an order reducing the redemption period to five weeks. When the complaint has been filed, the court shall issue a summons commanding the person or persons named in the complaint to appear before the court on a day and at a place stated in the summons. The appearance date shall be not less than 15 nor more than 25 days from the date of the issuing of the summons. A copy of the filed complaint must be attached to the summons.
Subd. 3. Service of summons and complaint. The summons and complaint may be served by any person not named a party to the action. The summons and complaint must be served at least seven days before the appearance date, in the manner provided for service of a summons and complaint in a civil action in the district court, and posted in a conspicuous place on the premises. If a defendant cannot be found in the state, then upon an affidavit to that effect being filed with the court, the summons and complaint may be served by sending a copy by certified mail to the defendant's last known address, if any, at least ten days before the appearance date. Summons by certified mail is complete upon mailing. If personal or certified mail service cannot be made on a defendant, then the plaintiff or plaintiff's attorney may file an affidavit to that effect with the court and service by posting the summons and complaint on the premises is sufficient as to that defendant. Service upon the United States of America shall be made in accordance with applicable federal law.
Subd. 4. Hearing; evidence; order. At the hearing on the summons and complaint, the court shall enter an order reducing the redemption period to five weeks from the date of the order, if evidence is presented supporting the allegations in the complaint and no appearance is made to oppose the relief sought. An affidavit by the sheriff or a deputy sheriff of the county in which the premises are located, or of a building inspector, zoning administrator, housing official, or other municipal or county official having jurisdiction over the premises, stating that the premises are not actually lawfully occupied and further setting forth any of the following supporting facts, is prima facie evidence of abandonment:
(1) windows or entrances to the premises are boarded up or closed off, or multiple window panes are broken and unrepaired;
(2) doors to the premises are smashed through, broken off, unhinged, or continuously unlocked;
(3) gas, electric, or water service to the premises has been terminated;
(4) rubbish, trash, or debris has accumulated on the premises;
(5) the police or sheriff's office has received at least two reports of trespassers on the premises, or of vandalism or other illegal acts being committed on the premises; or
(6) the premises are deteriorating and are either below or are in imminent danger of falling below minimum community standards for public safety and sanitation.
The court may consider an affidavit from any other person having personal knowledge, which states facts supporting any other allegations in the complaint. Written statements of the owner, the owner's personal representatives or assigns, including documents of conveyance, which indicate a clear intent to abandon the premises, are conclusive evidence of abandonment. In the absence of affidavits or written statements, or if rebuttal evidence is offered by the defendant or a party lawfully claiming an interest through the defendant, the court may consider any competent evidence, including oral testimony, concerning any allegations in the complaint. An order entered under this section must contain specific findings of abandonment and must contain a legal description of the premises.
Subd. 5. Recording of order. Within ten days after the order is entered, a certified copy of the order must be filed by the moving party with the office of the county recorder or registrar of titles and with the auditor for the county in which the premises are located. Failure to file the order within ten days shall not invalidate the proceedings.
Subd. 6. Duty of auditor. If the property is not redeemed within five weeks of the date of entry of the order the county auditor, without further notice, shall execute a certificate as provided for in section 281.23, subdivision 9.
Subd. 7. Homestead status. This section applies regardless of the subject property's homestead tax status at the time of sale.
Subd. 8. Effective date. This section shall apply only to tax judgment sales occurring on and after April 13, 1996.
HIST: 1996 c 471 art 3 s 29
Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes