Redeem Tax Delinquent Property in Arkansas

quit claim deed

Tax Deed Properties in Arkansas.

Who can redeem tax delinquent real property, and what does this process involve?

Have you lost your house to the State because you are behind on taxes? Do you have your eye on your neighbor’s house, knowing that they haven’t paid taxes in years? Not just anyone can redeem tax delinquent property. Arkansas has laws that limit who can redeem property once it has been certified to the Commissioner of State Lands.

Keep reading to find out whether you might be able to redeem the tax deed property that you are interested in.

Property Owners, Heirs, and Assigns

Arkansas Code Annotated §26-37-310 states that land certified to the state may be redeemed by the person owning the house or land at the time of forfeiture, or by his or her heirs, or assigns. If you owned the property at the time of forfeiture, you may be able to redeem. Likewise, if you have inherited or purchased the property, then you may be able to redeem.

Leinholders, Trustees, and Contract Purchasers

In addition to heirs and assigns, the Commissioner of State Lands recognizes the right to redeem by those who hold a legal interest in the house or land such as lienholders, trustees and contract purchasers. If you have a mortgage or lien on the property, then you may be able to redeem.

petition to redeem tax delinquent propertyPetition to Redeem, and Proof of Interest

Regardless of the nature of your interest in tax delinquent (tax deed) property, payment of taxes will not be accepted without a properly executed petition to redeem. Also, in many cases, copies of documents establishing one’s interest in the property must be provided along with the properly completed petition to redeem. This is especially true when heirs, assigns, or leinholders attempt to redeem the tax delinquent property.

For example, a mortgage holder may be required to provide a filed and recorded copy of the mortgage securing an interest in the tax delinquent property. On the other hand, an heir may be required to furnish a birth certificate, probate records, and/or an affidavit of heirship.

Don’t wait!

It can take time to find, access, or produce the documents that you need! Depending on your situation, it may take months (or longer) to obtain the necessary documents. Because it can take so long to gather the proof that establishes your interest in the property, the Commissioner’s office recommends that you begin working on the redemption process well in advance of any deadlines. The auction is already scheduled, whether you are ready or not!

For more information about redeeming Tax Delinquent Property, read this brochure from the Commissioner of State Lands office, or call the Commissioner’s office at 501-683-3053.

Excess Funds

If the property sells for more than the amount of taxes owed, excess funds may be paid to former deed holder. Former deed holders and lien holders should contact the Commissioner of State Lands to see if any excess funds are available after the parcel has sold. These funds are not automatically paid out, so ask the Commissioner how to request payment, if excess funds are available.

During and After the Sale

What if you are buying, not redeeming? Find out what buyers need to know before, during, and after the auction or post auction sale of tax delinquent (tax deed) property.

Commissioner’s Advice

The Commissioner of State Lands (COSL) advises buyers and investors to seek legal consultation in order to establish stronger title to properties purchased through a tax sale. The Commissioner does not and cannot guarantee title to these properties.

In most cases, buyers of tax delinquent (tax deed) land will need to obtain a decree of confirmation and quiet title before a title company will issue title insurance for the property. Purchasers of tax delinquent land should be prepared to pay these additional expenses in order to gain clear title to their tax deed property.

To Confirm and Quiet Title

Establishing a clear title to properties purchased through tax sales is accomplished by filing a Complaint to Confirm and Quiet Title.  This is a complex legal process consisting of an action filed with the County Circuit Court where the property is located. Arkansas state law has very specific requirements for these types of actions.  Please consult an Arkansas Real Estate attorney who has experience in this area to assist you with confirming the title to your tax deed properties.

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Published on: Jul 20, 2015

Last updated: February 17, 2018 at 12:12 pm

If you have purchased tax delinquent (tax deed) property in Arkansas and need legal assistance to confirm or quiet your title, please contact Deborah at The Hardin Law Firm, PLC.

Call: (501) 247-1830 or Email:

ATTORNEY: Learn more about our Attorneys and Staff.

SERVING: Cabot, Beebe, Ward, Searcy, Jacksonville, Lonoke County, White County, Faulkner County, and other central Arkansas areas. We also routinely serve out-of-state property owners, who require representation in Arkansas.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this web site is intended to convey general information. It should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. It is not an offer to represent you, nor is it intended to create an attorney-client relationship. Laws and procedures can and do change. You should consult a real estate attorney licensed in your area.

8 Comments on Redeem Tax Delinquent Property in Arkansas

  1. David Smith jr // March 14, 2018 at 10:56 am // Reply

    What do i do if someone is living in a tax delinquent property im purchasing in lonoke county through cos?

    • HI David, Thank you for your question.

      If you purchase a tax delinquent property in Lonoke County, AR, you may need to evict the occupants through an Unlawful Detainer action, or in conjunction with your Petition to Confirm Title.

  2. Robin Cullum // May 16, 2018 at 2:26 am // Reply

    Im trying to get a answer about my property i inherited from my mother, in van buren county and how to redeem it if tax problem with it and if it was taken, how do i get it back, asap.?

    • Hi Robin,

      You will need to redeem your mother’s property within 10 days of being sold by the Commissioner.

      You do this by requesting a Petition to Redeem from the Commissioner of State Lands.
      Go to:
      Click on “Pay Taxes / Purchase”
      Find your parcel by entering the name of the owner or the parcel number.
      If you see your property show up in the search results, click the “View” button next to the correct property. This will take you to a “Parcel Information” page.
      At the bottom of the Parcel Information page, Click “Request Petition to Redeem,” then click “Complete Requests.”
      Follow the instructions for downloading and submitting the petition.

      If your property did not show up in the search, contact the Commissioner’s office directly for help at 501-324-9422.

      In order to redeem, you have to prove that you have an ownership interest. Getting the right proof takes time, so do not delay!

  3. Robin Cullum // May 16, 2018 at 2:28 am // Reply

    Can i please get a answer on steps to fix it regain ownership, if it was gone. Please help regain my property. Contact me asap. XXX-XXX-XXXX (phone number removed)

  4. Richard Palmer // June 17, 2018 at 9:16 am // Reply

    I moved here recently and bought my first farm years ago at a tax auction in Virginia. I thought anybody could purchase through the Commissioner, then the owner, family or Lien holders had 10 days to redeem or 90 for some other clause? Is what you’re saying about who can buy mean I am not even able to participate?

    • Hi Richard,

      Thank you for your question.

      It is true that only the owner, heirs, lien holders, and other persons of interest can “redeem” the property. Redeeming the property is different than buying the property at auction. Redemption is reserved for persons who already have an interest in the property, whereas anyone in the general public can participate in the auction and try to buy the property from the Commissioner.

      For more information about the auction process, see:

      I hope this answers your question!

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