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Tax Assessment & Condemnation Report

A Freeze By Any Other Name Isn’t So Cold…NY’s Plan to Freeze Senior’s Assessments Thawing Quickly

Posted in Assessments, Exemptions

Image courtesy of JanPietruszka/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Earlier this year lawmakers re-introduced legislation proposing to cap real property tax assessments for seniors 70 years old or older – indefinitely.

Assembly Bill A04624, sponsored by Assemblyman Raymond Walter (District 146), would amend New York Real Property Tax Law (RPTL) by adding a new section, RPTL Section 467-G, which would expressly authorize a cap on the real property tax assessments of eligible seniors’ primary residences. Eligible seniors include persons 70 years of age or more with an annual income of $100,000 or less (the bill does not say whether this is an individual or household income limit). Primary residences include residential properties owned in whole, or in part (at least an undivided fifty percent interest), and occupied by eligible seniors.

Under the proposed RPTL Section 467-G, assessed values of qualified properties would freeze at the value used in the year prior to the effective date of the legislation or the year prior to a senior’s application. As the bill does not provide for expiration of the freeze, the freeze apparently extends indefinitely – or at least until the death of the eligible senior.

Like similar bills introduced in 2006, 2010 and 2011, Bill A04624 has been referred to and currently sits with the State Assembly Aging Committee for review and consideration.   Whether legislators will feel compelled to advance it this time around is unknown. With the Governor touting a plan for a tax-free New York, perhaps the need for a freeze on assessments melts away…