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H.B. No. 538

H.B. No. 538

AN ACT
relating to the scheduling of hearings before appraisal review
boards on property tax protests; making conforming changes.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:

SECTION 1. Section 41.12, Tax Code, is amended by adding
Subsection (c) to read as follows:
(c) The board of directors of an appraisal district
established for a county with a population of at least one million
by resolution may:
(1) postpone the deadline established by Subsection
(a) for the performance of the functions listed in that subsection
to a date not later than August 30; or
(2) provide that the appraisal review board may
approve the appraisal records if the sum of the appraised values, as
determined by the chief appraiser, of all properties on which a
protest has been filed but not determined does not exceed 10 percent
of the total appraised value of all other taxable properties.

SECTION 2. Section 41.45(e), Tax Code, is amended to read as
follows:
(e) On request made to the appraisal review board before the
date of the hearing, a property owner who has not designated an
agent under Section 1.111 to represent the owner at the hearing is
entitled to one postponement of the hearing to a later date without
showing cause. In addition and without limitation as to the number
of postponements, the [The] board shall postpone the hearing to a
later date if the property owner or the owner’s agent at any time
shows reasonable [good] cause for the postponement or if the chief
appraiser consents to the postponement. The hearing may not be
postponed to a date less than five or more than 30 [15] days after
the date scheduled for the [original] hearing when the postponement
is sought unless the date and time of the hearing as postponed are
agreed to by the appraisal review board, the property owner, and the
chief appraiser. A request by a property owner for a postponement
under this subsection may be made in writing, including by
facsimile transmission or electronic mail, by telephone, or in
person to the appraisal review board, a panel of the board, or the
chairman of the board. The chairman or the chairman’s
representative may grant, but may not deny, a postponement under
this subsection without the necessity of action by the full board.
The granting by the appraisal review board, the chairman, or the
chairman’s representative of a postponement [Postponement] under
this subsection does not require the delivery of additional written
notice to the property owner.

SECTION 3. Section 41.46(a), Tax Code, is amended to read as
follows:
(a) The appraisal review board before which a protest
hearing is scheduled shall deliver written notice to the property
owner initiating a protest of the date, time, and place fixed for
the hearing on the protest and of the property owner’s entitlement
to a postponement of the hearing as provided by Section 41.45 unless
the property owner waives in writing notice of the hearing. The
board shall deliver the notice not later than the 15th day before
the date of the hearing.

SECTION 4. This Act applies only to an ad valorem tax year
beginning on or after the effective date of this Act.
SECTION 5. This Act takes effect January 1, 2008.

______________________________ ______________________________
President of the Senate Speaker of the House

I certify that H.B. No. 538 was passed by the House on April
27, 2007, by the following vote: Yeas 133, Nays 0, 2 present, not
voting.

______________________________
Chief Clerk of the House

I certify that H.B. No. 538 was passed by the Senate on May
22, 2007, by the following vote: Yeas 31, Nays 0.

______________________________
Secretary of the Senate

APPROVED: _____________________
Date

_____________________
Governor

Property Tax Protection Program™ Benefits

  • No flat fees or upfront costs.  No cost ever unless your property taxes are reduced.
  • All practical efforts are made every year to reduce your property taxes.
  • Never miss another appeal deadline.
  • Property taxes protested for you annually.
  • You do not have to accept the appraisal district’s initial guesstimate of value.
  • We coordinate with you regarding building size / condition to avoid excess taxes.
  • Free support regarding homestead exemptions.
  • Some years are good – typically 6 to 7 out of 10 will result in tax reduction for you.
  • The other 3 to 4 years out of 10 we strike out. Most often due to people issues in the hearing process. Some years we get an easy appraiser at the informal; some years someone who is impossible to settle with.
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