Property Review and Appeal
Property owner participation and education is key to a fair system of taxation. My goal is to ensure all taxpayers are aware of their rights and to make the process efficient and easily understood by the property owner.
Calendar of Events
- Wyoming Statute 39-13-103 directs that all property will be listed, valued and assessed as of January 1 of each year. Assessment Schedules must be mailed to all property owners on or before the fourth Monday of April.
- Wyoming Statute 39-13-109(b)(i) requires persons wishing to contest their assessment to file not later than 30 days after the mail date or postmark a statement with the Assessor outlining their reason or disagreement with the assessment. The Assessor and Petitioner must disclose witnesses and exchange information, evidence and documents relevant to the appeal no later than 15 days prior to the scheduled county board of equalization hearing. Hearings are scheduled for mid June.
The Assessment Schedules mailed by the Assessor's Office contain the legal description of the property, the estimated fair market value and the assessed value. When the property owner receives the assessment schedule it should be opened immediately and reviewed. Particular attention should be paid to the Market Value. Does it represent what the property would have been worth if sold on January 1, 2010? If the value is within reason and no other errors are noted on the assessment schedule, further action is not required. However, if you disagree with the value, come in to the Assessor's Office as soon as possible to initiate the review process.
When the property owner comes into the office, the Property Record Card is reviewed and all property characteristic information is checked for accuracy. This includes square foot size, construction, finished area, out buildings, etc. In most cases this requires an interior/exterior field inspection by County Assessor staff. Any changes may affect the final market value.
During this review, the property owner may provide any information they would like to have considered such as appraisals, market analysis, special conditions or influences they feel may affect the property value.
The owner must provide an action desired by presenting an estimate of dollar value as of January 1st for the property in question.
For residential properties, Assessor staff will review the sales listing for the appropriate neighborhood with the owner and explain the basic neighborhood system. If desired by the owner, a copy of the sales listing for his neighborhood will be provided. NOTE: Under Wyoming Statute 34-1-142, sales information is not a "Public Record" and must be kept confidential. Persons receiving sales information may not disclose it to other individuals. Property owners may disclose this information to the County Board of Equalization in conjunction with any hearing. Due to the confidentiality of the sales information it cannot be electronically transmitted or given over the telephone.
Upon completion of the review the property owner will receive by mail: An amended schedule reflecting updated market value and estimated 2010 tax amount, or, notification that no changes have been made.
Formal Appeal Process
If after a review the property owner feels the value of his property is incorrect, he may file an official appeal. A packet which includes the Official Appeal of Assessment form and a copy of the Rules of Practice and Procedures for Appeal Before the County Board of Equalization Involving Tax Matters are available in the Assessor's Office or can be mailed to the property owner upon request. Copies of the form or statement must be filed with Assessor within 30 days of the mail date or postmark date on the Assessment Schedule. An appeal may be withdrawn at anytime by written notification to the Clerk's and Assessor's offices. A general order of proceedings follows:
- A hearing time/date is set and owner notified by mail. The County Assessor and the person contesting the assessment (petitioner) must disclose witnesses and exchange information, evidence and documents relevant to the appeal no later than fifteen (15) days prior to the hearing. This includes anything that is to be presented as evidence during the hearing.
- The County Commissioners serve as the County Board of Equalization. Other persons attending the hearing will include the hearing officer, recording secretary, secretary to the board, counsel for the board, parties to the appeal.
- The Petitioner is first to present evidence or witnesses. Any testimony presented may be questioned by the Assessor, the Assessor's attorney, or member of the board.
- The Assessor or a deputy presents evidence or witnesses. The testimony may be questioned by the Petitioner, his agent or member of the board.
- After all testimony and evidence is presented, a brief closing statement may be made by each side.
- The Board will notify participants in writing of their findings and any appeal action available to them no later than the first Monday in August.