(a) Persons charged with. The district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is situated shall have charge of all real estate which is or shall become the property of the United States by judgment of forfeiture under the internal revenue laws, or which has been or shall be assigned, set off, or conveyed by purchase or otherwise to the United States in payment of debts or penalties arising under the laws relating to internal revenue or which has been or shall be vested in the United States by mortgage, or other security for payment of such debts, or which has been redeemed by the United States, or which has been or shall be acquired by the United States in payment of or as security for debts arising under the internal revenue laws, and of all trusts created for the use of the United States in payment of such debts due the United States.
(b) Sale. The district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is situated may sell any real estate owned or held by the United States as aforesaid, subject to the following rules—
(1) Property purchased at sale under levy. If the property was acquired as a result of being declared purchased for the United States at a sale under section 6335, relating to sale of seized property, the property shall not be sold until after the expiration of 120 days (or 1 year in the case of such sale under levy before November 3, 1966) after such sale under levy.
(2) Notice of sale. A notice of sale shall be published in some newspaper published or generally circulated within the county where the property is situated, or a notice shall be posted at the post office nearest the place where the property is situated and in at least two other public places. The notice shall specify the property to be sold and the time, place, manner, and conditions of sale. In addition, the district director may use other methods of advertising and of giving notice of sale if he believes such methods will enhance the possibility of obtaining a higher price for the property.
(3) Time and place of sale. The time of the sale shall be not less than 20 days from the date of giving public notice of sale under subparagraph (2) of this paragraph (b). The place of sale shall be within the county where the property is situated. However, if the district director believes a substantially better price may be obtained, he may hold the sale outside such county.
(4) Rejection of bids and adjournment of sale. The internal revenue officer conducting the sale reserves the right to reject any and all bids and withdraw the property from the sale. When it appears to the internal revenue officer conducting the sale that an adjournment of the sale will best serve the interest of the United States, he may order the sale adjourned from time to time. If the sale is adjourned for more than 30 days in the aggregate, public notice of the sale must be given again in accordance with subparagraph (2) of this paragraph (b).
(5) Liquidated damages. The notice shall state whether, in the case of default in payment of the bid price, any amount deposited with the United States will be retained as liquidated damages. In case liquidated damages are provided, the amount thereof shall not exceed $200.
(6) Agreement to bid. The district director may, before giving notice of sale, solicit offers from prospective bidders and enter into agreements with such persons that they will bid at least a specified amount in case the property is offered for sale. In such cases, the district director may also require such persons to make deposits to secure the performance of their agreements. Any such deposit, but not more than $200, shall be retained as liquidated damages in case such person fails to bid the specified amount and the property is not sold for as much as the amount specified in such agreement.
(7) Terms. The property shall be offered for sale upon whichever of the following terms is fixed by the district director in the public notice of sale:
(i) Payments in full upon acceptance of the highest bid, or
(ii) If the price of the property purchased by a successful bidder at the sale is more than $200, an initial payment of $200 or 20 percent of the purchase price, whichever is the greater, and payment of the balance within a specified period, not to exceed one month from the date of the sale.
(8) Method of sale. The property may be sold either—
(i) At public auction, at which open competitive bids shall be received, or
(ii) At public sale under sealed bids.
(9) Sales under sealed bids. The following rules, in addition to the other rules provided in this paragraph (b), shall be applicable at public sales under sealed bids:
(i) Invitation to bidders. Bids shall be solicited through a public notice of sale.
(ii) Form for use by bidders. A bid shall be submitted on a form which will be furnished by the district director upon request. The form shall be completed in accordance with the instructions thereon.
(iii) Remittance with bid. If the total bid is $200 or less, the full amount of the bid shall be submitted therewith. If the total bid is more than $200, 20 percent of such bid or $200, whichever is greater, shall be submitted therewith. Such remittance shall be by a certified, cashier's, or treasurer's check drawn on any bank or trust company incorporated under the laws of the United States or under the laws of any State, Territory, or possession of the United States, or by a U.S. postal, bank, express, or telegraph money order.
(iv) Time for receiving and opening bids. Each bid shall be submitted in a securely sealed envelope. The bidder shall indicate in the upper left hand corner of the envelope his name and address and the time and place of sale as announced in the public notice of sale. A bid shall not be considered unless it is received by the internal revenue officer conducting the sale prior to the opening of the bids. The bids will be opened at the time and place stated in the notice of sale, or at the time fixed in the announcement of the adjournment of the sale.
(v) Consideration of bids. The internal revenue officer conducting the sale shall have the right to waive any technical defects in a bid. After the opening, examination, and consideration of all bids, the internal revenue officer conducting the sale shall announce the amount of the highest bid or bids and the name of the successful bidder or bidders, unless in the opinion of the officer a higher price can be obtained for the property that has been bid. In the event the highest bids are equal in amount (and unless in the opinion of the internal revenue officer conducting the sale a higher price can be obtained for the property than has been bid), the officer shall determine the successful bidder by drawing lots. Any remittance submitted in connection with an unsuccessful bid shall be returned to the bidder at the conclusion of the sale.
(vi) Withdrawal of bids. A bid may be withdrawn on written or telegraphic request received from the bidder prior to the time fixed for opening the bids. A technical defect in a bid confers no right on the bidder for the withdrawal of his bid after it has been opened.
(10) Payment of bid price. All payments for property sold pursuant to this section shall be made by cash or by a certified, cashier's, or treasurer's check drawn on any bank or trust company incorporated under the laws of the United States or under the laws of any State, Territory, or possession of the United States, or by U.S. postal, bank, express, or telegraph money order. If payment in full is required upon acceptance of the highest bid, the payment shall be made at such time. If payment in full is not made at such time, the internal revenue officer conducting the sale may forthwith proceed again to sell the property in the manner provided in subparagraph (8) of this paragraph (b). If deferred payment is permitted, the initial payment shall be made upon acceptance of the bid, and the balance shall be paid on or before the date fixed for payment thereof. Any remittance submitted with a successful sealed bid shall be applied toward the purchase price.
(11) Deed. Upon payment in full of the purchase price, the district director shall execute a quitclaim deed to the purchaser.
(c) Lease. Until real estate is sold, the district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is situated may, in accordance with instructions issued by the Commissioner, lease such property.
(d) Release to debtor. In cases where real estate has or may become the property of the United States by conveyance or otherwise, in payment of or as security for a debt arising under the laws relating to internal revenue, and such debt shall have been paid, together with the interest thereon (at the rate of 1 percent per month), to the United States within 2 years from the date of the acquisition of such real estate, the district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is located may release by deed or otherwise convey such real estate to the debtor from whom it was taken, or to his heirs or other legal representatives. If property is declared purchased by the United States under section 6335, then, for the purpose of this paragraph, the date of such declaration shall be deemed to be the date of acquisition of such real estate.
(e) Accounting. The district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is situated shall, in accordance with section 7809 and the instructions thereunder, account for the proceeds of all sales or leases of the property and all expenses connected with the maintenance, sale, or lease of the property.
(f) Authority of Commissioner. Notwithstanding the other paragraphs of this section, the Commissioner may, when he deems it advisable, take charge of and assume responsibility for any real estate to which this section is applicable. In such case, the Commissioner will notify in writing the district director for the internal revenue district in which the property is situated. In any case where a single parcel of real estate is situated in more than one internal revenue district, the Commissioner may designate in writing a district director who shall have charge of and be responsible for the entire property.
[32 FR 15241, Nov. 3, 1967, as amended by T.D. 7027, 35 FR 3806, Feb. 27, 1970; T.D. 7305, 39 FR 9953, Mar. 15, 1974]