Articles from 2005
In New Hampshire the tax year 2005 property tax bills are now or are soon to be sent out. Many communities have revalued, that should prompt a taxpayer review of his property tax bill. In addition, many communities in New Hampshire have experienced a drastic rise in the value of residential property. This drastic rise in residential real estate values has largely not taken place in the commercial and industrial markets. The result is that assessment ratios have tended to drop in communities that have not revalued. Therefore it particularly behooves taxpayers of commercial and industrial properties to thoroughly review their property tax bills. If a taxpayer is aggrieved by the assessment he generally has until March 1, 2006 to file an Abatement Application with the local community. If the taxpayer’s application is denied or ignored an appeal may be taken to the State Board of Tax and Land Appeals or The Superior Court.
In The Commonwealth of Massachusetts the fiscal year 2006 commenced on July 1, 2005 and runs until June 30, 2006. Most communities in the Commonwealth will be issuing their actual fiscal year 2006 property tax bills between now and the end of the year. Many communities have revalued or are in the process of revaluation. When the bills are issued and if a taxpayer is being unfairly assessed that is the time to file for relief. In most cases an Application for Abatement must be filed with the local Board of Assessors within 30 days after the actual tax bills are sent out. In Massachusetts it is also generally required that all taxes be paid timely in order to effectuate a valid property tax appeal. If a taxpayer does not receive satisfactory relief from the assessors an appeal may be filed at the Massachusetts Appellate Tax Board.
Most cities in towns in Maine have sent out their fiscal year 2006 property tax bills. Many cities and towns in Maine have undergone revaluations. If a taxpayer is unfairly assessed an Application for Abatement must be filed with the assessor within 185 days of commitment of the tax bill. The commitment date is usually within days of the tax bill being mailed out. The assessor has sixty days to act on the Application for Abatement. If the assessor fails to act on the Application within sixty days the Application is deemed to be denied. If the Application is denied or deemed denied an appeal may be taken within sixty days of the date of denial or deemed denied date. An appeal of a denial can be taken depending on the situation to the County Commissioner, or the Local Board of Assessment Review or the State Board of Property Tax Review.
Most of the cities in towns in Rhode Island have sent out their 2005 property tax bills. Some communities in Rhode Island have revalued. If aggrieved a party may file an Application for Abatement with the local assessor. The time to file Applications for Abatement is generally within 90 days of the day the first payment is due. In most cases that period of time is now. The Application for Abatement must be filed with the local assessor. If the local assessor denies or fails to act on the Application within forty-five days the Application is deemed to be denied. A further Application for Abatement may be filed with the local Board of Tax Assessment Review. If the local Board of Tax Assessment Review denies the Application an appeal can be filed in the Superior Court in the county where the property is located within 30 days of that denial.
The New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration is in the process of preparing the 2004 Equalization Survey. The survey is scheduled to be published sometime this spring and will contain the equalization ratios as of April 1, 2004. The April 1, 2004 assessing date is relevant to tax year 2004 with a filing deadline of March 1, 2005. Many taxpayers who filed appeals by March 1, 2005 do not actually know how meritorious their appeals are until the Equalization Survey is published. The Equalization Survey is very important to the New Hampshire property tax system. In New Hampshire the ratio works both ways. As a result of the study some cases will not be worth pursuing while others will draw renewed vigor. For example if the ratio is at 90% the proper assessed valuation is at 90% of market value. If the ratio is 110% the proper assessed valuation is at 110% of market value.