Sheriff Sale Frequently Asked Questions:


Why is civil action taken?

Ownership of property, either real estate or movables, can be jeopardized by a money judgment or by a delinquent payment on a loan.

What is real estate?

It is land with its improvements and the right to own and use it.

What are movables?

Anything that is not real estate is considered a movable or chattel property. Examples of movables are automobiles, boats, furniture, equipment, business inventories, etc.

How many days does it take before a foreclosed property goes to auction?

It takes a minimum of 45 days from receipt of the writ to advertisement for the auction. During this time, the foreclosure may be stopped for reasons such as bankruptcy or payment of the balance owed.

Where are the Sheriff’s Sales held?

The sale is conducted in the lobby on the first floor of the St. James Parish Courthouse, 5800 La Highway 44, Convent, LA.

When are the Sheriff’s Sales held?

Sales are held at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesdays.

Where do you advertise the items that are being sold?

In the local paper, the News-Examiner, and on our website at Each property is advertised in the News-Examiner, the official newspaper of record, twice within 30 days for real estate or once within 10 days for movables before the auction.

What are the usual costs of foreclosures?

Sheriff requires a $500 ADVANCE DEPOSIT for real estate and $300 for movables from the party filing the original petition. Advertising, appraisals, certificates, deed, clerk’s fee, towing, storage and sheriff’s cost plus 3% sales commission on the sale of real estate and 6% commission on the sale of movables to the Office of the Sheriff. All aforementioned fees will be taken from the final bid amount if a third-party successfully wins the bid.

Can I enter the property before I bid?

No access is allowed prior to the auction. The sale is not officially completed until the entire purchase price is paid in full. All property is sold “AS IS” and the deeds are not warranted.

What should I bring in order to bid at a Sheriffs Sale?

The bidder must provide a letter of credit from a financial institute before bidding begins.

What type of payment is required at Sheriff’s Sales?

Upon successfully bidding on the property, the successful bidder must provide the Sheriff with the full purchase price paid with Cash or Cashier’s check. (No personal checks accepted) plus their name, address, phone number and copy of their driver’s license, by noon on the Friday following the sale. Failure to meet this deadline may result in the property being reset for a second auction. Should the second auction result in a lesser price, the first bidder may be responsible for the difference in the two amounts.

What is the minimum opening bid?

There are two categories for the minimum opening bid:

WITH APPRAISAL – the bid must open at 2/3 of the appraisal and must satisfy the superior claim. If 2/3 of the appraisal results in an opening bid insufficient to cover the costs and commission, then the opening bid will be raised to reflect those expenses.

WITHOUT APPRAISAL – The bid must cover any superior claims plus the costs and commission.

When will you get the appraised value?

The appraised value will be given on the Monday afternoon before the sale. Call Vicki at 225-562-2211 for the appraised value.

Who is eligible to bid?

The sale is open to the public. However, if a person has bid on a property and neglected to pay that bid and the property goes back to auction, that person is no longer eligible to bid. Employees of the Sheriff’s Office and their immediate families are not allowed to bid.

When will I receive the property deed?

Not less than 15 days after paying the balance of the purchase price, the Sheriff shall pass an act of sale to the purchaser.