At common law a man's lands were not liable to be sold for his debts,638 but now, in all of our states, lands can be sold for debts. Before this can be done, however, a judgment must be obtained,639 and a writ of execution must be issued. The sheriff thereupon makes the sale and executes the deed.640 A certain period within which the debtor may redeem the land from the sale is usually provided.641 The purchaser is said to take an estate on execution.642 It has already been seen, in the discussion of estates, what interests in real property were subject to sale on execution.643 A purchaser at an execution sale acquires the interest of the judgment debtor.644

635 Engle v. White (Mich.) 62 N. W. 154; Roberts v. Cambridge, 164 Mass. 176, 41 N. E. 230; Prospect Park & C. I. R. Co. v. Coney Island & B. R. Co., 144 N. Y. 152, 39 N. E. 17; Haydon v. Haydon (Ky.) 27 S. W. 975; Wright v. Brown, 116 N. C. 26, 22 S. E. 313; Hoover v. Buck (Va.) 21 S. E. 474.

636 Smith v. Pierce, 65 Vt. 200, 25 Atl. 1092; Fuchs v. Fuc'ns, 48 Mo. App. 18.

637 Emery v. Darling, 50 Ohio St. 160, 33 X. E. 715.

638 For an account of the remedies which were provided at different periods, see Digby, Hist. Real Prop. (4th Ed.) 279.

639 In nearly all the states a judgment becomes a lien on the Judgmem debtor's real estate as soon as It is rendered or docketed. See 2 Dembitz, Land Tit. § 165.

640 Finch v. Turner (Colo. Sup.) 40 Pac. 565. Higgins v. Bordages (Tex. Civ. App.) 28 S. W. 350; Diamond v. Turuer, 11 Wash. 189, 39 Pac. 379.

641 2 Dembitz, Land Tit. 1300. And see Mcllwain v. Karstens, 152 111. 135, 38 N. E. 555; Ritchie v. Ege, 58 Minn. 291, 59 N. W. 1020; Southern California Lumber Co. v. Mcdowell, 105 Cal. 99, 38 Pac. 627; Smith v. Bank, 102 Mich. 5, 60 N. W. 438.

64 2 As to estates on execution, see 2 Washb. Real Prop. (5th Ed.) 31. 643 Ante, pp. 39, 5S, 149, 156, 205, 209, 274.

644 Garrett v. Wagner, 125 Mo. 450, 28 S. W. 762; Bramlett v. Wettin, 71 Miss. 902, 15 South. 934; Butler v. Fitzgerald, 43 Neb. 192, 61 N. W. 640; Greenleaf v. Grounder, 86 Me. 298, 29 Atl. 1082.

Same - Effect of Jreversal of Judgment.

Where land is sold aa the result of an action, and the judgment is subsequently reversed, a third person, who has purchased the premises, will have a good title,645 though, if one of the parties had been the purchaser, such would not have been the case.646 When the purchaser is a third person, the defendant's remedy is in damages against the plaintiff.

Same - tax Titles

288. The title to land may be divested for failure to pay taxes. This may be

(a) By forfeiture to the state (p. 490).

(b) By sale under a ministerial proceeding (p. 491).

(c) By sale under a judgment obtained in a judicial proceeding. Such a proceeding is either

(1) In personam against the person owing the tax, or

(2) In rem against the land on -which the tax is assessed (p. 492).

289. The owner has a period of redemption before the tax deed is issued (p. 492).

290. The purchaser takes in some states only the tax debtor's interest in the land; in other states he takes the whole fee (p. 493).


In a few states it is provided in the statutes regulating the collection of taxes that land on which the taxes are in arrears may be forfeited to the state after certain notices have been given to the owner.648 An opportunity is given the owner to redeem for a certain

645 Whiting y. Bank, 13 Pet. 6; Feger v. Keefer, 6 Watts (Pa.) 297; Shultz v. Sanders, 38 N. J. Eq. 154, 293.

646 Jackson v. Cad well, 1 Cow. (N. Y.) 622. Reynolds v. Harris, 14 Cal. 677. The same is true of a purchase by the plaintiff's attorney. Hays v. Cassell, 70 111. 669; or by his wife, Ivie v. Stringfellow's Adm'r, 82 Ala. 545, 2 South. 22.

648 Black, Tax Titles (2d Ed.) §§ 194, 197. See Lasher r. Mecreery, 66 Fed. 834.

§§ 288-290) time after the forfeiture. If redemption is not made, the title becomes absolute in the state, and need not be followed by a sale of the land.649 Statutes providing for a forfeiture for nonpayment of taxes are strictly construed.650