You missed the March 1 deadline – now what?
March 1 was the deadline to request an abatement of real estate taxes under RSA 76:16,I(b). The courts and BTLA have been strict in holding taxpayers to that deadline. If a proper abatement application was not filed by March 1 then the taxpayer lost the right to challenge their 2015 assessment. In certain circumstances, however, a taxpayer still may challenge their 2015 assessment. A taxpayer may be able to recoup taxes paid in prior years if the assessment was illegal or the town engaged in improper assessing practices and attempted to conceal the practice. A contract entered into with the municipality relating to real estate taxes also may exclude a taxpayer from the March 1 deadline. Some taxpayers may be able to obtain an abatement for prior years simply by demonstrating “good cause.” The requirements associated with each of these options are too nuanced to set forth in this message. Call Paul Alfano to discuss.
Tax sales – not fair market.
A tax sale is an example of a sale that is not consummated in a fair market. A tax sale is a “forced sale” and thus “irrelevant to the determination of a fair market price.” See State v. Therrien, 123 N.H. 309 (1983).
It is improper to change the assessment of just one property, during a non-revaluation year, based on the sales price of that property. Duval v. Manchester, 111 N.H. 375 (1971).
If you request a tax abatement, can the municipality increase your assessment?
The Superior Court does not have jurisdiction to increase an assessed value above the municipality’s assessment. If the municipality wants to correct an error of undervaluation, it must do so within the time constraints of RSA 76:14, and even then, the grounds for doing so are limited to circumstances where a taxpayer has escaped taxation completely, or someone else has been taxed instead. The municipality may, however, increase the assessment for the following tax year, so taxpayers should make sure they have solid grounds for an abatement before filing an abatement application.
Strange but true….
Strange New Hampshire Laws: Sunday’s are for rest in New Hampshire, unless you are repairing a mill or factory!
“No person shall do any work, business, or labor of his secular calling, to the disturbance of others, on the first day of the week, commonly called the Lord’s Day except works of necessity and mercy, and the making of necessary repairs upon mills and factories which could not be made otherwise without loss to operatives; and no person shall engage in any play, game, or sport on that day.”