534

Another Bureaucratic Nightmare

There are many circumstances that would force someone to lose their home but missing a $1.63 tax bill shouldn’t be one of them. The Atwoods of Sidwell, Louisiana, began their tax nightmare in 1996, when their home was re-valued at $100 over the state’s homestead exemption and they were sent a property tax bill for the first time. But due to a mailing mistake, the bill was returned to the Sheriff’s office. The property was then sold in July of 1997 for failure to pay taxes. Not fair! And so began a seven year battle for their home, during which time the Atwoods were not allowed to borrow money to repair the home after it was damaged by hurricane Katrina. If it wasn’t for bad luck, the Atwoods wouldn’t have none at all. But the story has a happy ending—an anonymous local businessman stepped forward to pay for a settlement. There are some good people in the world after all.

Times-Picayune article