How to appeal property tax in Georgia
The saying goes, «Death and Taxes are the only two certainties of life.» Both are inevitable, but with both there are things that can be done to ease the situation. This guide will be talking about easing the tax bill for property tax in the state of Georgia. All states in the U.S. have similar procedures, but may vary some.
The appeal period in most Georgia counties is between January 1 to April 1. In counties that bill more than once a year, the appeal period is between January 1 to March 1. If you are doing the appeal in 2010, the taxes you are appealing are for 2009. Dates, and all data to prove your case need to be from 2009.
Taxes are essential for operating our local governments, and often for nice amenities. But taxes are suppose to be based on «fair market value». If because the «fair market value» has decreased in your community, but the taxes are still based on old higher values, you need to ask for this adjustment. Tax officials in most cases will not just give you a adjustment, unless of course, the «fair market value» goes up.
Determine filing deadline
Determine your filing deadline. In Georgia the general rule is if you are billed once a year for property taxes, your deadline is April 1. If you are billed more than once, your deadline is March 1. To be sure, you can check online with your county tax assessor, or call the tax assessor’s office.
Use the right form
For most of Georgia the form that should be used is the PT-50. This can be found at the Georgia Department of Revenue site. Click here. Cobb county, Ga. has their own form which can be found at the Cobb County Tax Assessors site. Click here. Check to see if your county uses the state form, or a form just for their county.
Filling out the form
This form is a very easy one to fill out. It is not capable of being sent online. So type in the information and print, or print and hand write the information. Now follow along with the points below and the illustration above.
- Date at the top for tax year should be for the previous calendar year.
- Property identification will be found on the tax assessor’s website if you don’t have the tax bill handy. In some cases, a call to the county tax assessor, or going into the office will be necessary to get the information.
- Describing property. It is important to show that it is residential, owner occupied, and if you are in a PUD, which stands for Planned Unit Development. This is the case for subdivisions.
- Why you are appealing. In this case a square feet discrepancy, and decrease in fair market value. Show the 100% fair market value listed on the tax roll. Then state the 100% fair market value you as the taxpayer feel is correct.
- Sign, and date with the current date.
Make a summary page using charts and pictures, and summarize with a paragraph,and attach to the PT-50. Make it simple, and easy to see at a glance, why you feel your property should have a lower assessed value, and thus lower tax.
See a larger view of this attachment below.