Funds deposited with the declaration of taking and any funds thereafter deposited in court should be promptly distributed. To this end, the U.S. Attorney should:
- Obtain promptly and review all information available as to the state of the title to the property and any liens, taxes, and encumbrances thereon.
- Advise the defendants or their counsel by letter (see ENRD Resource Manual at 28) of the fact that funds have been deposited in court, and offer all possible assistance in obtaining the disbursement of such funds. Suggested forms for use in processing such disbursements are set out in the ENRD Manual at 32, 33, 41 and 42. By this procedure the landowner makes written application through the U.S. Attorney, who makes an appropriate motion to disburse, attaching the defendant's sworn application. The court may enter its order either with or without a formal hearing.
- If the former owner's title is clear and unencumbered all of the funds deposited may be disbursed to him/her.
- If the title is encumbered, sufficient funds should be retained in the registry of the court to pay all liens on the property and to satisfy claims of any third persons whose interest is disclosed by the title evidence.
- If additional funds are deposited pursuant to a deficiency judgment, the defendants should be advised when the funds are available for withdrawal.
- When funds cannot be disbursed because the owner cannot be located, or for other reasons, an order should be sought immediately requiring the clerk to disburse the undistributed balance to the Treasury of the United States at the expiration of the five-year period pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2042. One certified and one uncertified copy of the order should be transmitted to the Department, together with two copies of the certificate of deposit showing the deposit in a federal depository. See USAM 5-15.555.
Updated December 18, 2015