New Law on Erroneous Tax Exemptions

A new state law requires Cook County homeowners to repay unwarranted savings on property taxes. Property owners who received homeowner, senior or senior freeze exemptions to which they were not entitled have until December 31, 2013 to repay the tax savings without interest or penalty. After January 1, 2014 property owners will incur interest and penalties when repaying unwarranted exemptions. 
Tax exemptions are only available on a homeowner’s principal residence. However, a significant number of rental properties, investment properties, and second homes have been receiving exemptions to which they are not entitled. Until now, little could be done about it. This new state law provides a procedure that will require those who have received exemptions erroneously to repay them.    
Under the law, most property owners can be made to repay the savings from erroneous tax exemptions going back three years. Property owners with a significant number of such exemptions can be liable for repayment for as many as six years. The Cook County Assessor’s new Erroneous Exemptions Department has begun identifying offenders and will be administering the notification and collection process. Monies collected will be distributed to the local taxing bodies affected.

For more information regarding how to take advantage of the amnesty program running through December 31, 2013, please visit 

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