Are your property values falling but your assessed value remains the same? Paying too much in property taxes? New laws may help you!
In a few weeks most county property tax assessors will have mailed ever property owner a property tax assessment notice. Some of you have already received your notices.
With the passage of Senate Bill 346 signed into law in 2010 (Georgia Code Section of 48-5-2(3)(B) (effective on January 1, 2011) several changes were made to help property owners in the appeal process.
The overall reform includes more than 50 changes to current state law. Significant taxpayer friendly provisions include:
- Requirement that every property owner receive annual Notice of Assessment, which guarantees right to appeal
- Every Notice of Assessment must contain estimated property tax
- Expansion of appeal time-period from 30 to 45 days
- Alternative streamlined appeal option for property valued in excess of $1,000,000
- Automatic taxpayer victory on appeals when government fails to respond within 45 days
- Requirement that all relevant sales, including distress sales (foreclosures, short sales, bank sales), be included when determining Fair Market Value
- Requirement that only “current use of property” be used in determining Fair Market Value
- Taxpayer must be given access to all data used in determining Fair Market Value
- Sales price establishes Fair Market Value for next tax year
- Property owners will have 45 days to file an appeal with the Board of Assessors office.
I will get into more detail about the appeal process over the next few weeks. But for now, spend some time researching the issues and learning about the new laws and the appeal process.
Here are some links to get your started:
(Note: some information on websites may be outdated and may not reflect the new changes in law.)