Tax Certificate Sale

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 owed tax debt and penalties. The sale is conducted in reverse auction style with the participants bidding downward on interest rates starting at 18 percent. The certificate is awarded to the lowest bidder.

Beginning with the sale of 2009, the sales are now conducted “online”. Bidders will register online, submitting the following information:

  • Name(s) in which the certificates will be issued.
  • Mailing Address
  • E-Mail Address
  • Phone Number
  • Social Security Number
  • Federal ID Number

Each bidder must make a deposit of 10% of what they intend to spend.

tax certificate, when purchased, becomes an enforceable first lien against the real estate. The certiifcate holder is actually paying the taxes for a property owner in exchange for a competitive bid rate of return on his 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 (7) years from the date of issuance. The holder of any tax certificate, at any time after 2 years have elapsed since April 1 of the year of the issuance of the tax certificate and before the expiration of 7 years from the date of issuance, may file for an application for tax deed. If the property owner fails to pay the tax debt, the property tax deed is sold at public auction. Buyer Beware is good advice. The purchase of Tax Certificates is not without risk.

Tax Certificate Sale Information

The Tax Certificate Sale is held online and the website in which the sale is conducted is located at Florida Statutes 197.432-602 cover the procedures for tax certificates and tax deeds are available on the Internet at

Bankruptcy as it pertains to Tax Certificates

Upon notice of Bankruptcy the Tax Collector files a claim for unpaid taxes. Tax Certificates and Certificate Holders and their addresses are noted on the claim. No action may be taken to collect on a tax certificate or tax deed application filed while the property is protected in bankruptcy. Your certificate does not expire while the property is in bankruptcy. If you need any further information please contact the Hendry County Tax Collecor’s office at (863) 675-5280.