Delinquent Cook County tax sale postponed

A Cook County circuit judge has postponed the annual tax sale of delinquent properties scheduled to begin May 8, because of the spread of the new coronavirus, Treasurer Maria Pappas said Wednesday.

In an emergency motion, Pappas asked for the delay to protect the health and safety of Cook County residents. The judge granted the motion, postponing the tax sale until the court orders the sale to proceed.

"Holding the tax sale under these circumstances would be unfair to tens of thousands of homeowners who are living paycheck-to-paycheck and face this pandemic" Pappas said.

There are more than 52,000 properties whose delinquent taxes would be sold to investors if the tax sale were held, Pappas said. Of those properties: More than 30,000 are homes; more than 23,000 owe less than $1,000; about 2,000 are owned by senior citizens.

Postponing the tax sale would delay payment of an estimated $48 million in property taxes that would have been collected. The Cook County Treasurer's Office collects $14 billion in taxes each year.

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