2015-04-29 / Features

Katz To Provide Assistance On Tax Liens

BY RICHARD GENTILVISO

The upcoming annual New York City sale of tax liens can result in foreclosure proceedings on delinquent properties and Borough President Melinda Katz is offering help to those in jeopardy.

Property owners on the 2015 Lien Sale List must act by May 14, 2015, otherwise their unpaid tax debt may be sold to third-party private collectors.

The city plans to raise $80 million in the tax lien sale over the next year and a half, said Department of Finance Commissioner Jacques Jiha in March. The city took in $81.2 million from the last lien sale and has raised $1.3 billion through tax lien sales since 1996. The tax lien sale will run from May through December 2016.

Katz will hold a tax lien assistance workshop for homeowners and other property owners who may be affected due to unpaid taxes and other bills owed to the City of New York on Monday, May 4, at Queens Borough Hall, 120-55 Queens Boulevard in Kew Gardens, from 4 pm to 8 pm in Room 213.

Drop-ins are welcome and will be served one on one on a first-come, first-served basis by representatives of the city Departments of Finance and Environmental Protection.

Owners should bring copies of the overdue bill(s) in question as well as any letters received from the city regarding any overdue bills. Property owners have several options, that if done before May 14, 2015, could remove them from the 2015 Lien Sale List, namely, they may apply for an exemption, enter into an installment pay plan with the city, or pay off the debts in full.

Owners of 5,504 properties in Queens have received notices informing them that their properties are on the 2015 Lien Sale List due to unpaid debts, i.e. property taxes, water and sewer bills or other property charges, according to an April 20 press release by the Borough President. The Department of Finance said it sends five warning notices before selling liens.

Of the properties listed, 3,974 are mostly residential properties of up to three units, 510 are mostly residential properties of more than three units, and 1,020 are commercial and industrial properties with the most properties being in zip codes 11434 (South Jamaica/Springfield Gardens), 11368 (Corona), 11691 (Far Rockaway), 11433 (Jamaica) and 11413 (Laurelton).

Owners can check the status of their property at : www1.nyc.gov/site/finance/taxes/property/liensales. page.

“I urge you to protect your home, protect your family, and protect your property,” said Katz urging action before the May 14 deadline. Property owners needing assistance but unable to attend the May 4 workshop can call 311 or contact the Department of Finance directly.

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