Town of Winchester v. Stockwell

Decision Date03 October 1911
Citation81 A. 526,76 N.H. 193
PartiesTOWN OF WINCHESTER v. STOCKWELL (two cases).
CourtNew Hampshire Supreme Court

Transferred from Superior Court, Cheshire County; Mitchell, Judge.

Actions by the Town of Winchester against Rosa B. Stockwell and against Thomas E Stockwell. Transferred from the superior court. Cases discharged.

Assumpsit. The first action was brought upon a personal judgment against Rosa B. Stockwell, a resident of Winchester, for taxes assessed against her in that town for the years 1903 and 1904. The second action was for the recovery of nonresident taxes assessed for the years 1900, 1901, and 1902, against certain lands in Winchester standing in the name of Thomas E. Stockwell, a nonresident, as owner. In the first action the defendant filed certain pleas. The plaintiff demurred to the pleas, and filed an answer, alleging certain facts, which the defendant admitted to be true in part; and upon the admitted facts, and other facts found, a verdict was ordered for the plaintiff, subject to the defendant's exception. In the second action Rosa was permitted to appear in defense of the suit, to file the same pleas, and to have the facts admitted and found in the first action considered so far as they are applicable. Judgments in rem were ordered against each tract of land for the amount of the taxes thereon in the several years, subject to the defendant's exception. The defendants claim that the actions cannot be maintained, as the taxes sought to be recovered have been paid by the town to the collector of taxes; that, being in default in the payment of their taxes, the collector advertised and sold their lands to satisfy them; and the town, being the only party who would take the lands and pay the taxes, became the purchaser, and later received conveyances of the property.

John E. Allen, for plaintiff.

Joseph Madden, for defendants.

BINGHAM, J. On the facts here presented these actions cannot be maintained, either in the name of the town or the collector of taxes. Actions under section 17, c. 60, of the Public Statutes, should be brought by the collector acting in his public capacity and as the representative of the state. The taxes collectible under the statute are in no sense debts owed to the town as a corporation, but to the public. The controversy there contemplated is one between the state and the taxpayer for the enforcement of a public right. Canaan v. District, 74 N. H. 517, 536, 70 Atl. 250. The town, in becoming the purchaser of the property at the tax sales, acted in its corporate capacity, and stands with relation to the purchase the same as an individual would. Cooley, Tax. (1st Ed.) 353. It paid the taxes "solely as a consideration for a supposed title, taking the risk of its...

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8 cases
  • Grieb, County Clerk v. Natl. Bank of Ky.'s Rec.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court — District of Kentucky
    • December 5, 1933
    ...& Mfg. Co. v. Quitman County, 156 Miss. 396, 124 So. 437, 125 So. 416, 66 A.L.R. 614; McLaran v. Moore, 60 Miss. 376; Winchester v. Stockwell, 76 N.H. 193, 81 A. 526; Ness County v. Hopper, 110 Kan. 501, 204 P. 536. So long as the state and the owner, only are interested therein, it should ......
  • Grieb v. National Bank of Kentucky's Receiver
    • United States
    • Kentucky Court of Appeals
    • December 5, 1933
    ...& Mfg. Co. v. Quitman County, 156 Miss. 396, 124 So. 437, 125 So. 416, 66 A.L.R. 614; McLaran v. Moore, 60 Miss. 376; Winchester v. Stockwell, 76 N.H. 193, 81 A. 526; Ness County v. Hopper, 110 Kan. 501, 204 P. So long as the state and the owner, only, are interested therein, it should requ......
  • Shipp v. Sheffield
    • United States
    • Utah Supreme Court
    • October 21, 1941
    ... ... 244; ... Cripple Creek Trading & Mining Co. v ... Stewart, 100 Colo. 271, 67 P.2d 1032; Town of ... Winchester v. Stockwell, 76 N.H. 193, 81 A ... 526; Douglas v. City of Fargo, 13 N.D ... ...
  • Hampton v. Marvin
    • United States
    • New Hampshire Supreme Court
    • September 6, 1963
    ...in no sense a party to the controversy which is between the State in the exercise of its taxing power and the taxpayer. Winchester v. Stockwell, 76 N.H. 193, 81 A. 526; Opinion of the Justices, 87 N.H. 492, 494, 179 A. 344, 110 A.L.R. We are of the opinion that neither the town nor any othe......
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