Property TaxIt feels like tax season is always upon us, and this time of year is no different. The month of August, and specifically the second week of August, marks the typical time of year when the Property Appraiser’s office sends out TRIM Notices to all property owners in the county. TRIM Notices are sent out for all types of property, including residential and commercial.

What is a TRIM Notice?

A TRIM Notice stands for the “Truth in Millage” notice, and reflects the official notice of proposed property taxes as required by Florida law. The TRIM Notice is not your property tax bill, but is an estimate of your property taxes based on the proposed millage rates for that taxing year, your property values as of January 1 of that taxing year, and any applicable exemptions applied to your property, such as your homestead exemption.

If your TRIM notice isn’t a bill, then why is it important?

Every year, the Property Appraiser’s Office uses available information to assess the value of your property, which includes every property category (e.g. residential, commercial, agricultural, etc.).

Sometimes, there are external factors affecting property that may skew property values and, as a result, the property owner may want to contest the taxable value of the property. If a property owner wishes to contest the taxable value of his or her property, the property owner has 25 days from the mailing date of the TRIM notice in which to file a petition with the Value Adjustment Board contesting the value of the property. If a property owner does not file a petition with the Value Adjustment Board within that 25-day window, there are very limited circumstances where a late-filed petition will be accepted. If a property owner does not file a petition within the 25-day window and does not fall within one of the limited circumstances to allow for a late-filed petition, a property owner loses his or her right to contest the property valuation for that year.

If there is a good case for an adjustment to the valuation of property, this can result in significant savings on a property owner’s tax bill.

For questions or guidance on how to navigate the Value Adjustment Board process, please contact me at 239-344-1164 or kaylee.tuck@henlaw.com.