Seller overpaid for taxes at closing, now asking for money back. Need legal advice.

Hello, Hoping someone with some legal knowledge can help us out here. My wife and I just closed on a new home last night. Seemed like everything went smoothly, until I got a call from the title company today explaining to me that the seller over-credited us on the tax credit at closing and now wants his money back.

To explain in more detail, as I understand it the chain of events went like this (I'm not a tax or real estate expert so it's hard for me to even explain):

  • Seller bought the home at sheriff's sale sometime last year. At this time they had to pay more taxes (apparently) because it was a sherrif's sale. I think that they paid up through the end of 2017.
  • They fixed up the house and turn around to sell it to us.
  • At closing, we were credited (apparently) 2x the amount we should have been credited. Title company did not catch it because the sheriff's sale is not public record. Seller did not make them aware.
  • Money has been disbursed to the county treasurer and THEY are saying no refunds can be issued for the overpayment until Jan/Feb 2018.
  • Seller is now asking, "where's my money" (not an insignificant amount), and it seems he is expecting us (the buyers) to give it to him

Where does the legal responsibility lie for this oversight? It seems unfair to me for the burden to fall on us (the buyers) to essentially front an additional amount of money from our own pockets for something we were completely unaware of until after closing.

Any ideas on how to proceed? I'd be happy to give it back once the county agrees to give the refund in 2018 but have no idea how I would arrange that transaction.

More real estate tips at Program Realty Wix site

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