15 TOWER AVENUE, LLC v. ECUMENICAL HOUSING ET AL.

2009 Ct. Sup. 980
No. CV 08-5022316Connecticut Superior Court Judicial District of Hartford at Hartford
January 7, 2009

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This case is unpublished as indicated by the issuing court.]

MEMORANDUM OF DECISION ON PLAINTIFF’S MOTION TO STRIKE DEFENDANT HEARTWOOD 16, INC.’S SPECIAL DEFENSE
FREED, JTR.

The plaintiff is an assignee of tax liens from the City of Hartford (the City) for the years 2000-2006. The defendant Heartwood 16, Inc. (Heartwood) is an assignee of tax liens from the City for the years 1993-1999. All of the tax liens were filed against the property known as 29 Tower Avenue in Hartford.

The plaintiff has alleged that Heartwood failed to foreclose on its liens in a timely manner and seeks to extinguish any rights relating to the premises on the liens assigned and owned by Heartwood.

The plaintiff has filed a motion to strike Heartwood’s special defense which alleges that its liens cannot be foreclosed by plaintiff’s foreclosure action as a matter of law.

In support of its motion, the plaintiff cites and has attached a memorandum between the City and Heartwood. Section 2.03(c) of the memorandum reads as follows:

The Purchaser shall actively pursue collection of said tax liens. Should the Purchaser fail, within two years of the closing date, to (i) collect amounts due on said tax liens, or (ii) foreclose on said tax liens, they agree to forfeit any and all rights or claims, statutory or other, against Seller, its successors or assigns, in any legal action commenced to collect future tax liens on subsequent list year taxes. (Future tax liens are defined as those of 2000 and subsequent years.)

The plaintiff relies on this agreement in its claim that because Heartwood did not foreclose on its liens within the two-year period, (it started foreclosure but withdrew the action). Heartwood’s assigned liens CT Page 981 are extinguished.

This court has carefully examined the pertinent Section 2.02(c) to determine if indeed the section mandates extinguishment of Heartwood’s liens.

There is no language in the pertinent section requiring that the liens be extinguished. What the section does require, however, is that under the alleged circumstances Heartwood must forfeit any right or claims against the City or its assigns (the plaintiff) in any legal action commenced by the City or the plaintiff to collect future tax liens of subsequent list year taxes. (Emphasis added.)

Heartwood must forfeit its priority rights against future tax liens but the section does not mandate extinguishment of Heartwood’s liens. The plaintiff’s motion to strike the special defense of Heartwood is therefore denied.

CT Page 982

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