If you are a homeowner in the State of Georgia, you probably just received your Property Tax Notice of Assessment. If you haven’t received it yet, it’s likely on its way to you right now. But, what do you do with it once it arrives in your mailbox?

Don’t Just Throw it in the Trash

Although your annual Property Tax Assessment Notice is not a bill (not yet!), it provides you with some pretty meaningful information. It’s important to take a close look as soon as you receive the Notice because, if you disagree with the assessment, there is a short window during which you can take action.

Every year, properties throughout Georgia are assessed to determine the Current Year Value of that property. This value is then used to calculate the annual property taxes due. For the majority of Georgia homeowners, the property value assessment will not come as too much of a surprise. However, if the assessment just doesn’t look right to you, there is recourse available if you act fast.

You have 45 Days to File an Appeal

If you have your Property Tax Notice on hand, take a look at it. On the face of the assessment, you should see an appeal deadline date. An appeal must be filed with the Tax Commissioner of Assessor’s Office within 45 days from receipt of the Notice. Appeals sent after the filing deadline will not be accepted. Depending on your county, you may be able to file an appeal online. Of course, an online appeal is faster and easier than delivering an appeal form by mail or in person.

An Appeal Isn’t an Excuse to Not Pay Your Taxes

It is important to note that filing an appeal for your annual property value assessment does not change your tax payment obligations. Make note of all deadlines and ensure that you pay all taxes on time to avoid penalties and fees. If you end up paying your property taxes while your appeal is still pending, don’t worry. If your appeal is accepted and your tax liability changes as a result, the Tax Commissioner’s office will recalculate your final bill.

Make Sure You are Clear on the Process

Depending on your county in Georgia, the office to contact with questions is different. Although all Georgia counties do issue annual property tax assessments in May, the appeals process may be slightly different for each county. If you have any questions about the property tax assessment appeals process, your particular county’s rules, or anything else related to the legal maintenance of your home, feel free to reach out to the team of experienced real estate lawyers at Brian M. Douglas & Associates. Our office number is (770) 933-9009. We are always happy to help!