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WILLIAM B. SATTERLEE v. JOHN W. SENTER (08/11/69)

SUPREME COURT OF NEW YORK, SPECIAL TERM, RENSSELAER COUNTY 1969.NY.42752 <http://www.versuslaw.com>; 303 N.Y.S.2d 928; 60 Misc. 2d 813 August 11, 1969 WILLIAM B. SATTERLEE, AS ADMINISTRATOR D. B. N. OF THE ESTATE OF EDSON CARR, DECEASED, ET AL., PLAINTIFFS,v.JOHN W. SENTER, DEFENDANT William B. Satterlee, plaintiff in person. H. Irving Chase for James N. Brahan, plaintiff. Joseph J. Martin for defendant. John H. Pennock, J. Author: Pennock


John H. Pennock, J.

Author: Pennock

 This is a motion for an order striking out defendant's answer and directing the entry of summary judgment for the plaintiffs. The primary action was instituted pursuant to article 15 of the Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law to determine defendant's claim to certain real property and to adjudge the plaintiff as lawful owner of the fee.

The defendant cross-moves for summary judgment in his favor. (CPLR 3212.)

This controversy resolves around a tax deed which was executed by the County Treasurer running to one Helen N. Lapp. She subsequently deeded the same premises to the defendant herein, John W. Senter. The tax deed was the Lapp source of title. First to focus on the events and dates necessary to dissect this real property tax question. The findings are numbered and shall be referred to hereinafter.

(1) October 7, 1960. Tax Certificate sold to W. J. Cowee, Inc. by County Treasurer.

(2) October 6, 1961. Tax Certificate sold to W. J. Cowee by County Treasurer.

(3) July 1, 1962. Helen N. Lapp redeemed Tax Certificate at No. 1 and No. 2.

(4) October 5, 1962. Helen N. Lapp purchased Tax Certificate.

(5) October 4, 1963. Helen N. Lapp purchased Tax Certificate.

(6) October 5, 1963. Helen N. Lapp requests deed from Treasurer. (Section 1018, 1020, Real Property Tax Law.)

(7) November 12, 1963. County conveys property as requested at No. 6.

(8) April 21, 1964. County Treasurer sent notice of cancellation of deed at No. 7.

The tax deed to Helen N. Lapp was based upon the unpaid taxes for the year 1960. This was an obvious error as the certificates issued were redeemed by the grantee herself. Therefore, there was no basis under the Real Property Tax Law for the County Treasurer, or the county, if it had bid in, to issue a deed. It makes no difference on the issue of the validity of the deed as to the procedure followed by the county in respect to the enforcement of the collection of taxes by tax sale as redemption under section 1010 of the Real Property Tax Law had been affected by "any other person". (Real Property Tax Law, § 1010, subd. 1.) As to procedure of sale by treasurer or county. (Real Property Tax Law, §§ 1018, 1019.)

Now as to the mechanics of the notice of cancellation and cancellation of the tax deed pursuant to section 1026 of the Real Property Tax Law. It is here that the treasurer failed to explicitly follow the statute as he did not deliver to Helen N. Lapp an instrument of abandonment duly executed and acknowledged in the same manner as a deed. (Real Property Tax Law, § 1026, subd. 3.) He also failed to deliver such instrument of abandonment to the County Clerk and of course the ...


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