Allegheny County Property Tax Assessment Appeals- Deadline to File is March 31, 2014

By: Kenneth C. Foltz, Sr., Esq. and Alisa N. Carr, Esq.

If you own commercial or residential real estate in Allegheny County, Monday, March 31, 2014 is the deadline to:

  • File an Appeal to contest the County’s determination of the 2014 assessed value of the property,
  • File an application for exemption from property tax, and
  • Pay Allegheny County real estate taxes at the 2% discount level.

The form to file an appeal is thankfully short and straightforward.  Click here to access it.

It is a common mistake for a property owner to assume that the assessment amount is an accurate reflection of the value of their property. In reality, a variety of factors should be considered when reviewing the assessment amount including:

  • Size of the property
  • Main use of the property
  • Comparable sales of similar properties in the area
  • Age of the property
  • Types of structures on the property

In Pennsylvania, each county uses a different base year to determine how the property is assessed. Although the taxing bodies in Allegheny County, including the County, City/Township, and School Districts, are supposed to assess real property at fair market value for the 2012 base year, the assessed value is often inaccurate and inflated. After the 2012 countywide reassessment, over 100,000 assessment appeals were filed. Despite this, there are thousands of properties that remain over-assessed.

It is good practice to review a property’s assessed value each year in order to determine whether the assessment is consistent with the market value of the property, or whether a tax appeal might be warranted.

If you believe your property was inaccurately assessed, you may want to consider obtaining an independent appraisal and the possibility of filing a tax assessment appeal. Please bear in mind that the deadline to file a property tax assessment appeal in Allegheny County is March 31, 2014.

Leech Tishman’s Real Estate Practice Group has experience with commercial and residential property assessment appeals and non-profit exemption applications, and can evaluate whether a property owner should file an assessment appeal, guiding them through the process, often times helping them obtain a lower assessed value.

Kenneth C. Foltz, Sr. is a partner at Leech Tishman and chairs the firm’s Corporate Group. He also practices in the Private Equity and Government Relations Groups. Ken can be reached at 412.261.1600 x 242 or kfoltz@leechtishman.com.

Alisa N. Carr is a partner at Leech Tishman and is a member of the firm’s Litigation, Employment and Energy Groups. She can be reached at 412.261.1600 x 218 or acarr@leechtishman.com.

Leech Tishman is a firm dedicated to providing full-service commercial legal services to individuals, businesses, and institutions. We combine a deep understanding of our clients and their businesses with skilled legal counsel to find solutions. We offer legal services in alternative dispute resolution, bankruptcy & creditors’ rights, construction, corporate, employment, energy, environmental, safety & toxic torts, estates & trusts, government relations, insurance coverage & corporate risk mitigation, intellectual property, international legal matters, litigation, real estate, and taxation. Leech Tishman has offices in Pittsburgh, PA, Chicago, IL, New York, NY, Los Angeles, CA and Wilmington, DE. For more information call 412.261.1600 or visit www.leechtishman.com.