In some states the legislator has provided that the sale of land for taxes shall be preceded by the rendition of a judgment determining the amount of the taxes due. The proceeding to obtain such a judgment is in the nature of a proceeding in rem against the land, rather than in personam against the owner of the land, and, consequently. personal service of notice of the proceeding is not regarded as a prerequisite to the judgment, construe live service by publication being authorized. Any objections to the validity of the tax or to the assessment must be made by way of defense to the application for judgment, and the judgment is. until reversed, regarded as conclusive of the right to make the sale, according to numerous decisions, even though the taxes were actually paid.

Sec. 559. Forfeiture to state

The statute occasionally provides that, upon nonpayment of taxes due the state, the land, instead of being sold, shall be forfeited to the state. To what extent such a forfeiture is valid if not preceded by a judicial finding that a default in the payment of taxes exists is a question as to which there has been considerable difference of opinion.2

Sec. 560. Remedial legislation

The legislatures of the various states have, particularly in more recent years, frequently passed curative statutes for the purpose of validating tax sales previously made, as well as those thereafter to be made. These acts are regarded as valid in so far as they undertake to validate the proceedings in respect to a particular step therein with which the legislature could have dispensed in the first place, but no further. The same end of curing defective proceedings has frequently been attained by the passage of acts providing that the deed to the purchaser shall be prima facie evidence of the regularity of the proceedings, and it has sometimes been made even conclusive evidence in this respect, this latter legislation being valid, however, as are other curative acts, in regard only to matters which could have been previously dispensed with.

Another mode in which the legislatures have undertaken to add to the security of the purchaser at a tax sale is by "short" statutes of Limitation in connection with tax titles, requiring the original owner to proceed to recover the land from the purchaser within a certain number of years, less than that within which actions for land must ordinarily be brought. These statutes have usually, like the other statutes having the same purpose in view, been regarded as applicable only when the jurisdictional requirements of a valid sale were present, and as insufficient to validate a sale which Is void for want of jurisdiction on the part of the officials to make the sale.

2. Cooley, Taxation (3rd Ed )