Office of the Bay County Treasurer

Shawna S. Walraven, Treasurer

Bay County Building
515 Center Avenue, Suite 602
Bay City, Michigan 48708-5122
Voice: (989) 895-4285
Fax: (989) 895-4082

Frequently Asked Questions

I didn’t receive a property tax bill from my Local Township or city. Will the county waive the interest on my delinquent taxes?

No. The county treasurer is required by law (sec. 211.56 of the general property tax act) to add a 4% administration fee on March 1st– the date taxes are turned over delinquent – and 1% interest per month. There is no provision for waiving these or any other fees.

Can I make partial payments?

Yes. Partial payments can be made at any time, but all statutory fees and interest will be applied to the unpaid balance.

What does “forfeiture” mean?

The Forfeiture date each year is March 1st– one year after your taxes are turned over delinquent to the county treasurer. THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT YOU’VE LOST YOUR PROPERTY. “Forfeiture”, as defined in the property tax laws, means that your property is being PREPARED for foreclosure on the March 31st after the forfeiture date. In other words, you have 13 months from the forfeiture date to pay your delinquent taxes to avoid foreclosure. The foreclosure is an order by a Bay County Circuit Judge. Foreclosure is FINAL. There is no further time to redeem.

What happens on the “forfeiture” date?

The county is required to add a $175 title search fee, $20 for recording fees, and an additional 6% interest is added to your tax bill. You must pay your entire delinquent tax bill by March 1st after delinquency to avoid these charges.

My property taxes are too high. How can I challenge my taxable value?

Please contact the assessor in the city or township where the property is located.

Can I get a list of foreclosed properties to purchase at your auction?

Yes. The list is available about mid-June of each year. Bear in mind that the county only foreclosed on about 75 properties in 2011. If you’re looking for MORTGAGE FORECLOSURES, these are listed each week in the Bay City Democrat Legal News. Mortgage foreclosures are conducted by the Bay County Sheriff Dept.

Are credit cards accepted for payment?

Yes. You can access our credit card page by going to, go under the heading labeled departments, and click on the Treasurer’s link, under online services click on Delinquent Property Tax Payments. It will take you to the LexisNexis payment screen. You can follow their website to pay the taxes from there. There is a 3% fee to use this service.

Can I pay by ACH from a savings or checking account?

Yes. By filling out an Authorization Agreement for Preauthorized Payments form, the Treasurer’s Office can set up automatic draws in any amount and as often as you wish. Contact Holly in the office to set up this service.