2020 Georgia Code
Title 48 - Revenue and Taxation
Chapter 4 - Tax Sales
Article 2 - Purchase by Counties
§ 48-4-20. Authority of Counties to Buy Property Sold Under Tax Executions

Universal Citation: GA Code § 48-4-20 (2020)
  1. The governing authority of any county may purchase and hold in its official capacity any real property offered for sale by virtue of tax executions, except that the governing authority may bid on the real property only when other bids do not cover the amount of the tax executions and costs.
  2. The governing authority of the county shall not bid more for the property than the amount of taxes and costs. The governing authority, upon bidding on any property, shall draw its warrant on the county treasurer to pay to the levying officers the costs due on the tax executions and costs accrued in effecting the sales. The governing authority of the county shall not be required to pay the proportionate part of the taxes due the state, any school district, or any other political subdivision or authority of counties by virtue of the tax sale until the real property is redeemed in the manner provided in this chapter or is resold by the governing authority of the county.
  3. The 12 months' redemption period allowed under this chapter for the redemption of realty sold under a tax execution shall begin to run from the date of the sale; provided, however, that the redemption period for any realty sold under a tax execution before April 22, 1981, shall expire on December 31, 1988.

(Ga. L. 1892, p. 252, § 1; Civil Code 1895, § 915; Civil Code 1910, § 1178; Code 1933, § 92-8201; Ga. L. 1937, p. 446, § 1; Code 1933, § 91A-420, enacted by Ga. L. 1978, p. 309, § 2; Ga. L. 1981, p. 1857, § 9; Ga. L. 1988, p. 1957, § 2.)

Law reviews.

- For article surveying recent legislative and judicial developments in Georgia's real property laws, see 31 Mercer L. Rev. 187 (1979).


Effect of redemption on vesting title.

- Purchaser at tax sale acquires defeasible title, under which the purchaser is entitled to a deed from the officer selling the property, and can convey the purchaser's own defeasible title to another person, subject only to the right of redemption. If the amount required for redemption is paid or sufficiently tendered, such payment or tender revests title in the owner, but otherwise, at the expiration of the redemption period, title becomes absolute in the purchaser or the purchaser's grantee. Durham v. Crawford, 196 Ga. 381, 26 S.E.2d 778 (1943).

Availability of injunctive relief to preserve right of redemption.

- An injunction will lie in favor of the owner of land bought by the county at a tax sale in order to prevent the county from reselling the land before the time claimed by the owner as expiration of the owner's redemption period, when it is alleged that the county is threatening to sell the land in small tracts to numerous purchasers while the right of redemption still exists, which if done would subject the owner to a multiplicity of suits with such purchasers. Newsom v. Dade County, 177 Ga. 612, 171 S.E. 145 (1933).



- 85 C.J.S., Taxation, § 1336 et seq.


- Right of public officer to purchase tax certificates or tax titles, 5 A.L.R. 969.

Sale of property at tax sale for more or less than the amount of taxes, penalties, and costs, as affecting its validity, 147 A.L.R. 1141.

Who may redeem, from a tax foreclosure or sale, property to which title or record ownership is held by corporation, 54 A.L.R.2d 1172.

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