Property Tax Hearing Protest 41.45b
Property Tax Protest Owner May Appear in Person or by Affidavit, Present Evidence, Cross Examine Appraiser
Section 41.45(b) – Hearing on Property Tax Protest
Property tax protest hearings can be attended in person or by affidavit. Most owners and property tax consultants elect to attend the property tax hearing in person.
Benefits of attending the property tax hearing in person include the informal hearing and ability to emphasize concerns regarding unequal appraisal and excessive appraisal. At Harris County Appraisal District, if you appear for the scheduled hearing, you are given this opportunity before being sent to the appraisal review board (ARB) hearing. At some appraisal districts, including Dallas Central Appraisal District, you need to arrive early to have an informal hearing. If you arrive at the scheduled time, you immediately proceed to the ARB property tax protest hearing.
Appearing at the property tax protest hearing via affidavit is fairly simple; compile relevant evidence and put it in the form of an affidavit (sworn to and notarized). Some property owners submit an affidavit to obtain an ARB order so they can file a judicial appeal. In most cases, it makes more sense to appear in person or to submit evidence with the affidavit.
The property tax protest hearing is the only point in the taxation of property when the process favors the property owner. Most owners who prepare and attend the hearing benefit from property tax savings (a reduction in property taxes).
Sec. 41.45(b) – Property Tax Hearing Protest.
(b) A property owner initiating a protest is entitled to appear to offer evidence or argument. A property owner may offer evidence or argument by affidavit without personally appearing and may appear by telephone conference call or videoconference to offer argument. A property owner who appears by telephone conference call or videoconference must offer any evidence by affidavit. A property owner must submit an affidavit described by this subsection to the board hearing the protest before the board begins the hearing on the protest. On receipt of an affidavit, the board shall notify the chief appraiser. The chief appraiser may inspect the affidavit and is entitled to a copy on request.
Text of subsection as amended by Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 965 (S.B. 1919), Sec. 1
(b-1) An appraisal review board shall conduct a hearing on a protest by telephone conference call or by videoconference, as specified by the property owner at the owner’s election, if:
(1) the property owner notifies the board that the property owner intends to appear by telephone conference call or videoconference in the owner’s notice of protest or by written notice filed with the board not later than the 10th day before the date of the hearing; or
(2) the board proposes that the hearing be conducted by telephone conference call or videoconference and the property owner agrees to the hearing being conducted in that manner.
Text of subsection as amended by Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 644 (H.B. 988), Sec. 17
Text of subsection effective on January 01, 2022
(b-1) An appraisal review board shall conduct a hearing on a protest by telephone conference call if the property owner notifies the board that the property owner intends to appear by telephone conference call in the owner’s notice of protest or by written notice filed with the board not later than the 10th day before the date of the hearing.
(b-2) If a property owner elects to have a hearing on a protest conducted by telephone conference call or videoconference, the appraisal review board shall:
(A) a telephone number for the property owner to call to participate in the hearing, if the hearing is to be conducted by telephone conference call; or
(B) an Internet location or uniform resource locator (URL) address for the property owner to use to participate in the hearing, if the hearing is to be conducted by videoconference; and
(2) hold the hearing in a location equipped with equipment that allows each board member and the other parties to the protest who are present at the hearing to hear and, if applicable, see the property owner offer argument.
(b-3) A property owner is responsible for providing access to a hearing on a protest conducted by telephone conference call or videoconference to another person that the owner invites to participate in the hearing.
Text of subsection as added by Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 965 (S.B. 1919), Sec. 1
(b-4) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, an appraisal review board is not required to conduct a hearing by videoconference if the board:
(1) is established for a county with a population of less than 100,000; and
(2) lacks the technological capability to conduct a videoconference.
Text of subsection as added by Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 644 (H.B. 988), Sec. 17
Text of subsection effective on January 01, 2022
(b-4) An appraisal review board shall sit in a single-member panel to conduct a protest hearing under this section if the property owner requests that the hearing be conducted by a single-member panel:
(1) in the notice of protest; or
(2) in writing submitted to the board not later than the 10th day before the date of the hearing.
Text of subsection effective on January 01, 2022
(b-5) If the recommendation of a single-member panel that conducts a hearing under Subsection (b-4) is not accepted by the appraisal review board, the board may refer the matter for rehearing to a single-member panel composed of a member who did not hear the original protest or the board may determine the protest.
Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2306, ch. 841, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1982. Amended by Acts 1981, 67th Leg., 1st C.S., p. 171, ch. 13, Sec. 138, eff. Jan. 1, 1982; Acts 1987, 70th Leg., ch. 794, Sec. 1, eff. June 18, 1987; Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 796, Sec. 37; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 836, Sec. 3.1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 828, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1039, Sec. 38, eff. Jan. 1, 1998; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 416, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 463, Sec. 2, eff. Jan. 1, 2000; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 21.001(99), eff. Sept. 1, 2001.
Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 626 (H.B. 538), Sec. 2, eff. January 1, 2008.
Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1267 (H.B. 1030), Sec. 4, eff. June 19, 2009.
Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 771 (H.B. 1887), Sec. 11, eff. September 1, 2011.
Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 924 (S.B. 1546), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2011.
Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1259 (H.B. 585), Sec. 21, eff. January 1, 2014.
Acts 2015, 84th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1201 (S.B. 1394), Sec. 1, eff. January 1, 2016.
Acts 2017, 85th Leg., R.S., Ch. 80 (H.B. 455), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2017.
Acts 2017, 85th Leg., R.S., Ch. 744 (S.B. 1286), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2017.
Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 944 (S.B. 2), Sec. 62, eff. September 1, 2020.
Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 533 (S.B. 63), Sec. 17, eff. September 1, 2021.
Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 644 (H.B. 988), Sec. 17, eff. January 1, 2022.
Acts 2021, 87th Leg., R.S., Ch. 965 (S.B. 1919), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2021.
Right to protest by taxpayer, see Sec. 41.41.
Determination of protest, see Sec. 41.47.
Notice of Protest Hearing, see Sec. 41.46.
Appraisal review board record requirement, see Rule Sec. 9.803.
Appearance at appraisal review board hearing in person or by affidavit is mandatory condition precedent to filing suit. Webb County Appraisal District v. New Laredo Hotel, Inc., 792 S.W.2d 952 (Tex. 1990).
Appraisal review board members perform quasi-judicial functions so that immunity did apply in barring claims against them in the performance of their duties. Three appraisal review board panel members were sued by a tax consultant claiming negligence in a value determination for not basing the value reduction on a preponderance of the evidence presented at the protest hearing. The members asserted the affirmative defense of judicial immunity. Sledd v. Garrett, 123 S.W.3d 592 (Tex. App.-Houston [14th Dist.] 2003, pet. denied).
An unadjudicated protest filed by a taxpayer does not bar a hearing pursuant to a motion for late correction under Section 25.25(d). Dismissal of a protest for failure to appear at a hearing is not an adjudication of the rights of the parties. The taxpayer was not entitled, however, to recover attorneys fees under Section 41.45 as a result of the denial of the hearing on the motion for late correction. Koger Equity, Inc. v. Bexar County Appraisal Review Board, 123 S.W.3d 502 (Tex. App.-San Antonio, 2003, no pet. h.).
Tax Code Section 25.25(c), subject to a five-year limitation, gives the appraisal review board the authority to change the appraisal roll on motion of the chief appraiser or a property owner. Section 25.25(b) does not contemplate the filing or presentation of any protest, or authorize the appraisal review board to review the chief appraiser’s decision. Western Athletic Clubs, Inc. v. Harris County Appraisal District and Harris County Appraisal Review Board, 56 S.W.3d 269 (Tex. App. – Amarillo 2001, no pet.).
An appraisal review board exceeds its authority by having a written procedure that a taxpayer’s fiduciary authorization must be filed prior to the filing of a protest or motion. Tarrant Appraisal Review Board v. Martinez Brothers Investments, Inc., 946 S.W.2d 914 (Tex. App.-Fort Worth 1997, no writ).
Taxpayer is entitled to judicial review of the appraisal review board order – he is not required to meet his burden of proof or present evidence at the appraisal review board hearing. When the appraisal review board issues its order, the taxpayer has exhausted his administrative remedies. National Pipe and Tube Company v. Liberty County Appraisal District, 805 S.W.2d 593 (Tex. App.-Beaumont 1991, writ denied).
These codes affect property owners across the state, in both larger and smaller counties including:
- Brazoria County
- Waller County
- Denton County
- Fort Bend County
- Montgomery County
- Tarrant County
- Bexar County
- DeWitt County
- Tom Green County
- Starr County
- Nolan County
- Uvalde County
- Dawson County
- San Patricio County
- Reeves County
- Johnson County
- Navarro County
The Texas Property Tax Code applies to all property types in Texas including:
- Student housing
- Daycare center
- Regional mall
- Auto dealer
- Commercial building
- Bowling alley
- Office building
- Shopping mall
O’Connor & Associates offers property tax services to all property owners of all land uses across Texas.
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