Personal Property Mobile Home tax bills will be mailed on January 27, 2017.
The last day to file an appeal for the 2017 tax year is April 1, 2017.
TIME IS IMPORTANT – LATE APPEALS ARE INVALID.
***ONLINE APPEAL FORM***
The following information should be included in your written appeal:
- Property ID #
- Your name, address, daytime phone number and email address
- Reason for appealing (taxability, uniformity, value or denial of homestead exemption)
- Any pertinent information to support your appeal
- Whether you would like your appeal to be heard by the county Board of Equalization or an arbitrator (see below for details) ***THIS CHOICE MUST BE MADE AT THE TIME OF APPEAL***
Submit your appeal:
By mail: Board of Tax Assessors, P O Box 498, Evans, GA 30809
By fax: 706-312-7476
By email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Once your appeal has been filed with the Columbia County Board of Tax Assessors within the time provided, you will be sent an acknowledgement of your appeal. A member of the appraisal staff may contact you to discuss your appeal. The Board of Tax Assessors will review the valuation, taxability or uniformity issues in question. The value may be increased, decreased or left the same.
If you are not satisfied with the decision from the Board of Assessors, you may:
- Appeal to the County Board of Equalization: The appeal based on value, uniformity, taxability or denial of exemption is filed by the property owner and reviewed by the Board of Assessors. The Board of Assessors may change the assessment and send a new notice. The property owner may appeal the assessment in the amended notice within 30 days. This second appeal made by the property owner or any initial appeal which is not amended by the Board of Assessors is automatically forwarded to the Board of Equalization. A hearing is scheduled and conducted and the Board of Equalization renders its decision at the conclusion of the hearing. If the taxpayer is still dissatisfied, an appeal to Superior Court may be made.
- Appeal to an Arbitrator: An appeal of value may be filed to Arbitration by filing your appeal specifying Arbitration with the Board of Assessors within 45 days of the date of the notice. The Board of Assessors must notify the taxpayer of the receipt of the arbitration appeal within 10 days. The taxpayer must submit a certified appraisal of the subject property within 45 days of the filing of the notice of appeal which the Board of Assessors may accept or reject. If the taxpayer’s appraisal is rejected the Board of Assessors must certify the appeal to the county Clerk of Superior Court for arbitration. The arbitration is authorized by the judge and a hearing is scheduled within 30 days. The arbitrator will issue a decision at the conclusion of the hearing, which is final and which may not be appealed further. If the taxpayer’s value is determined by the arbitrator to be the value, the county is responsible for the Clerk of the Superior Court’s fees, if any, and the fees and costs of the arbitrator. If the Board of Assessors’ value is determined by the arbitrator to be the value, the taxpayer is responsible for the Clerk of the Superior Court’s fees, if any, and the fees and costs of the arbitrator.
- The taxpayer or the Board of Tax Assessors may appeal the decision of the Board of Equalization to Superior Court.
- Written notice of appeal must be filed within 30 days to the county board of tax assessors
Once a decision has been made by the county Board of Equalization the taxpayer may appeal their decision to the Superior Court of the county by mailing or filing with the county Board of Tax Assessors a written notice of appeal. The written notice of appeal should be mailed or filed within 30 days from which the decision of the county Board of Equalization was mailed.
- Ad valorem taxes must be paid
Before the Superior Court can hear an appeal, the ad valorem taxes must be paid in an amount equal to the last year in which taxes were determined to be due. (O.C.G.A. 48-5-29)
- Notification of Certification of Notice of Appeal to Clerk of Superior Court
The county Board of Tax Assessors will certify the notice of appeal to the Clerk of the Superior Court. The taxpayer or their attorney or agent will be served with a copy of the notice of appeal with the civil action file number assigned to the appeal.
- Appeal Heard by Superior Court
In most cases the appeal will be heard before a jury at the first term of court unless questions of law are at issue in the appeal.
- Property Owner Could Recover Court Costs and Fees
In certain instances, the property owner may recover court costs and reasonable attorney fees incurred in the appeal hearing before the Superior Court. The property owner could recover these costs and fees if the court finds the final value to be 85% or less (80% for commercial property) of the Board of Equalization's determination of value. This would not apply, however, if the property owner had failed to return the property for taxation.