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Taxation – Tax Sale – Personal Property – Mobile Homes – Ownership – Rent Claim

Taxation – Tax Sale – Personal Property – Mobile Homes – Ownership – Rent Claim

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The respondent-county sold four mobile homes at a tax sale; the next day, appellant bought a mobile home park, including the same four mobile homes. The mobile homes were owned by an LLC, but the county sent its tax notices to the individual who was the sole member of the LLC and who had the same address as the LLC. Under these unique circumstances, we decline to elevate the corporate form over the taxpaying function. Notifying the individual rather than notifying his LLC is an immaterial distinction.
Furthermore, county records reflect that the county believed the individual to be the owner of the mobile homes. We will not impose on counties a duty to search DMV records every time a mobile home is subject to a tax sale.
We affirm summary judgment for respondents.
S.C. Code Ann. § 12-51-40 says that one collecting delinquent taxes on personal property – defined to include mobile homes – need not move the personal property from where it is situated at the time of seizure. If the legislature had intended for rent to be due on lots when mobile homes were seized, it would have said so. Since there is no requirement to pay rent, we reject appellant’s argument that the county was responsible to collect rent and include it in the expenses of the levy, seizure and sale of the mobile homes.
Appellant never demanded rent; consequently, the conditions did not make it unjust for the respondent-purchaser to fail to pay rent. We reject appellant’s claim of unjust enrichment.
Sandy Hill Partners, LLC v. Central Palmetto Asset Management, LLC (Lawyers Weekly No. 012-024-23, 10 pp.) (Per Curiam) Appealed from Florence County Circuit Court (Michael Nettles, J.) Walker Willcox for appellant; Malloy McEachin, Theodore von Keller and Sara Christine Hutchins for respondents. South Carolina Court of Appeals (unpublished)

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