Baldwin Haspel Burke & Mayer LLC

Property Tax Assessments and Appeal Rights

Matthew Treuting - 

Tax rolls for various Parishes in Louisiana are now open, or are set to be open this month, for inspection.

We encourage all property owners to review the tax rolls to make sure that their assessment is correct. The tax rolls should be reviewed annually, as assessments can change each year. This is the quadrennial reassessment year for Orleans Parish, during which time assessments are known to change more dramatically.

We also encourage owners to review the assessments of neighboring properties to determine if their assessment is equitable. Further, homeowners should review the rolls to verify that their homestead exemption or property tax freeze is properly applied.

Taxpayers that own commercial properties—especially properties that have earned tax credits for offering low-income housing—might also want to contest the methodology used to determine the assessment. These taxpayers should review the rolls to determine if the cost, income or market approach is most suitable for their property.

The Assessor can resolve some disputes directly during the open roll period, although our experience is that many taxpayers must file an appeal to reduce their proposed assessment. Toward the end of the open roll period, there is often insufficient time to resolve the matter directly with the assessor, with longer waiting times to meet with the Assessor’s office.

If the property owner and Assessor are unable to find a resolution on the proposed assessment during the open roll period (or just don’t want to wait in line), then property owners must file an appeal with the Board of Review within three business days of the close of the tax rolls. For the current year, appeals in Orleans must be filed before 4pm on August 22, 2019. If the taxpayer or Assessor does not agree with the determination made by the Board of Review, then a further appeal must be timely filed with the Louisiana Tax Commission within a seven day period. Taxpayers that fail to timely file their appeal with the Board of Review or Louisiana Tax Commission may lose their right to contest the assessment, which could result in an unfair—and costly—tax burden. The success of property tax appeals is oftentimes dependent on the quality and relevance of evidence supporting a reduced assessment, as based on the valuation methodologies that are required by law.

The Orleans Parish Assessor’s Office will have its rolls open for public inspection July 15 through August 19. The Orleans Parish tax rolls are accessible here.

The Jefferson Parish Assessor’s Office will have its rolls open for public inspection for a period of fifteen (15) days sometime between August 1 and ending no later than September 15. The Jefferson Parish tax rolls can be located here.

Note that other Parishes have different periods for their open rolls, which are published by the Louisiana Tax Commission. The 2019 open book dates by Parish can be viewed  here.

In prior years, we have successfully represented multiple taxpayers before the Assessor’s Office, Board of Review and the Louisiana Tax Commission.

If you have any questions regarding this tax matter, or need assistance with your assessment, please contact Matthew Treuting at (504) 569-2900 or mtreuting@bhbmlaw.com.


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