Friday, September 23, 2016

Proposed New Licensing Requirements for Non-Attorney Tax Reduction Firms in Nassau

 
Nassau County’s program to license non-attorney tax assessment firms has already started – if not voted in yet. There are many firms that have sprouted up in the past few years, some of whom may not be as knowledgeable about the business as they should be. These firms will now be licensed and, hopefully, regulated. In a Newsday article published on September 20th entitled, “Edward Mangano’s budget would hike small business license fees,” it states, “In documents filed with the county legislature, officials contend a license for tax assessment reduction firms is needed to ensure “senior citizens are not victimized by unscrupulous” firms not run by practicing attorneys.”

As of now, there are already licensing requirements in Suffolk County for non-attorney tax grievance firms, which are regulated by the Suffolk County Consumer Affairs Department.

We all get many, many, many solicitations to reduce the taxes on our homes. Tax certiorari for small claims assessment review (SCAR) has become a cottage industry. Most cases in Nassau are settled without cash refunds as the assessments are lowered at hearings before the tax bills are sent. Too many flyers come with outlandish claims of reductions on other properties in the area. However, there is no accountability of whether those reductions were even close to what the property should have received as a reduction. There is no rule-of-thumb percentage reduction. Every property must be individually analyzed, and Suffolk cases are even more complicated because of the 10 different town procedures that require a more rigorous analysis and hearing representation.

Tis the season where we will all be bombarded with mailers – let the buyer beware!
 
 
 

Monday, September 12, 2016

Nassau Taxes Are Up, and Coming Soon



The October bill is the first half of the school tax for the 2016/17 tax year.  If the assessment was reduced by a tax certiorari complaint in January 2015 complaint, the tax bill in October 2016 should reflect the reduced assessed value.  The January 2017 general tax bill should be based on the same reduced assessed value.  However, commercial properties will have a much higher tax than normal because of the new Disputed Assessment Fund (DAF).  There is little information about this new fund – but guaranteed there will be 10 – 20% higher taxes to create the DAF.It is too late to complain about the assessment on the October 2016 school tax or the January 2017 general tax.  The tax certiorari complaint you can file in January 2017 is for the 2018/19 tax year.  Sounds complicated and a little wacky – well that’s the New York State mandated assessment procedure for Nassau County.