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On May 13, the Texas Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner revised an advisory bulletin (previously discussed here) for property tax lenders, which sets forth guidance regarding annual report deadlines, electronic signatures, activity from unlicensed locations, and working with borrowers, including by increasing communications, working out modifications, waving late charges, and suspending foreclosures, among other things.
On May 6, California issued an executive order suspending until May 6, 2021, certain provisions of the California Revenue and Taxation code that would impose penalties, costs, or interest for a failure to pay property taxes, provided that certain conditions are satisfied. For example, the property for which the taxes were not paid must either be residential real property occupied by the taxpayer or real property owned and operated by the taxpayer that qualifies as a small business under the Small Business Administration’s regulations. The taxpayer must also demonstrate that the taxpayer has suffered economic hardship, or was otherwise unable to pay in a timely fashion, due to Covid-19 or any local, state, or federal government response to Covid-19.
On April 27, a majority panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit denied the City of Miami Gardens’s petition for rehearing en banc after determining that the City “faced an uphill battle” to establish standing to bring a Fair Housing Act lawsuit against a national bank because it mainly relied on “an attenuated theory of injury.” As previously covered by InfoBytes, last July the 11th Circuit dismissed the City’s lawsuit against the bank for lack of standing after concluding, among other things, that the City’s evidence that certain loans may go into foreclosure at some point in the future “does not satisfy the requirement that a threatened injury be ‘imminent, not conjectural or hypothetical,’” and that the City failed to provide evidence that certain foreclosed loans had an effect on property-tax revenues or municipal spending or were issued on discriminatory terms. In explaining their decision to not rehear its 2019 ruling en banc, the majority stated that its decision—that the City failed to satisfy its burden of establishing standing—respects “the concerns and fairness and notice demanded by” both U.S. Supreme Court and 11th Circuit precedent. Two dissenting judges countered, however, that the rehearing should have been granted because, among other things, the 11th Circuit’s dismissal for lack of standing was done sua sponte “even though the City received neither proper notice that it failed to prove standing nor a legitimate opportunity to discover or produce the requisite evidence.”
California counties announce waiver of penalties and charges for late filing of property taxes for inability to pay caused by Covid-19
On April 4, the California State Association of Counties and the California Association of County Treasurers and Tax Collectors announced that California counties will use their existing authority to cancel penalties and other charges for homeowners, small businesses, and other property owners that are unable to pay their property taxes due to circumstances caused by Covid-19 on a case-by-case basis. The statement emphasizes that property owners who can pay or have not been directly affected by Covid-19 should still pay on time to keep critical government services running.
On March 27, the Texas Office of Consumer Creditor Commissioner updated a previous property tax lender advisory bulletin to include annual report deadline information. Recognizing that property tax lenders may need additional time to file annual reports, in light of disruptions caused by Covid-19, the March 31 deadline has been extended to April 30.
On March 18, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order extending the deadline for redemption payments on foreclosed property as a result of delinquent property tax payments, in response to the inability of county treasurers to process redemption payments during the pandemic. Whitmer’s order extended the deadline from March 31 to May 29, or 30 days after the termination of the state of emergency.
- Melissa Klimkiewicz to discuss "Lender town hall" at the National Flood Conference webinar
- Daniel P. Stipano to discuss "BSA for BSA seasoned officers" at an NAFCU webinar
- Sherry-Maria Safchuk to discuss "The CCPA: Successes, failures, and practical considerations for compliance" at a American Bar Association webinar
- Jon David D. Langlois to discuss "LIBOR transition: Preparations for legal professionals" at a Mortgage Bankers Association webinar
- Garylene D. Javier to discuss "Navigating workplace culture in 2020" at the DC Bar Conference