Lancaster County Residents affected by Flood may be Eligible for Property Tax Relief

September 29, 2011

On September 15, Aaron Zeamer blogged about how the flooding in Lancaster County resulted in an extension of income tax deadlines. Additional tax relief as a result of flooding could be a reduction or elimination of property taxes. If you have suffered a "catastrophic loss" due to mine subsidence, fire, flood or other natural disaster which exceeds 50% of the market value of your real property prior to the loss, you have the right to appeal your real estate assessment to the County Assessment Board. The Board has the duty to reassess your property to reflect the loss in value from the date of the loss to the end of the taxable year. In addition, any property improvements made after the loss in the same tax year shall not be added to the assessment roll for the remainder of the tax year but shall be added for the following year. If this is done, tax authorities need to reflect the reduced assessment in the form of a credit for the succeeding tax year, or if the property owner applies, taxing authorities shall pay a refund. 

We recognize that the broad scope of the term "catastrophic loss" probably means that you may have bigger problems to face than getting your property taxes reduced, but in the event that you have suffered such a loss, this is another means of relief.