Pickens County, State of Alabama
|REAL PROPERTY TAXES|
Property (ad valorem) taxes are taxed on real and/or business personal property. Real property includes land and improvements (An improvement is anything that adds value to real property such as a house, swimming pool, chicken house, barn etc). Business personal property refers to items which are used in any business and are movable or not permanently fixed to the land. (Note: Personal property owned and not used in a business is exempt from taxation.)
|WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU BUY REAL PROPERTY|
New property owners often rely on their title company, real estate agent or attorney to properly record and assess their property. The final responsibility lies with the owner to see that all the necessary steps have been completed. The steps are:
Record your deed in the Probate Office.
Assess the property in Office of the Revenue Commissioner.
Claim any exemption due you. Make sure all of this is done no later than December 31 for all property purchased by October I, in order to receive a bill in your name for the next year. Please report promptly all address changes.
The Revenue Commissioner is responsible for determining property value, which must, by the law, be set according to "fair and reasonable market value." Your property is probably not for sale but the county appraiser must set the value of the property as if it were "sold" in an "arms length" transaction between a "willing buyer and a willing seller," neither being under any pressure to buy or sell. If you feel your property value is incorrect, you may file a written protest with the Pickens County Board of Equalization. Upon your appeal, if time permits, you will be contacted by the county appraiser to review your valuation. If, after this review, you are still not satisfied with your valuation, a hearing will be set for you to formally meet with the Board of Equalization to present information you feel justifies a change in value. Following this hearing, you will be notified of the decision of the Board of Equalization. You may appeal to Circuit Court within 30 days of their decision. In order to preserve your right to carry the appeal process to Circuit Court, taxes must be paid by December 31, or a bond filed in Circuit Court in double the amount of taxes due.
|CLASS ||PROPERTY CLASSIFICATION |
|Class I||Property Owned by Utilities|
|Class II||All Other Property ||20% |
|Class III ||Agricultural Property & Owner-occupied Residential Property||10% |
|Class IV||Private Passenger Vehicles||15%|
|Multiply the appraised value of property by the proper assessment rate to determine the assessed value. Tax is the assessed value times the millage rate, less any qualifying exemptions. Timber tax is added at 10 cents per timber acre.|
|ASSESSMENT OF PROPERTY|
Each taxpayer is required by Alabama Law (Code 40-7-1) to provide a complete list of all their owned property, which is owned. The person acquiring property is responsible for reporting to the Revenue Commissioner a complete legal description of the property and should at the time claim any exemptions for which he or she is eligible. The Revenue Commissioner should be furnished a correct mailing address for all properties. The property owner must report any changes in ownership to the Revenue Commissioner.
All assessments and ownership with status as of October Ist of each year and are due and payable the following October Ist.
|HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION |
A Homestead Exemption is a tax break a property owner may be entitled to if he or she owns a single-family residence and occupies it as their primary residence on the first day of the tax year for which they are applying. A Homestead must be requested, it is not automatic. The total number of acres exempted cannot exceed 160 acres.
The following are the four types of Homestead Exemptions:
- Regular Homestead is available to all citizens of Alabama who own and occupy a single-family residence; including manufactured homes, as their primary residence and use this property for no other purposes. The amount of the exemption is $4,000.00 in assessed value for state taxes and $2,000.00 in assessed value for county taxes.
- Homestead Exemption 2 is for a resident of this state who is 65 years of age or older, whose annual adjusted gross income is less than $12,000 as reflected on their most recent State Income Tax Return or some other appropriate evidence, OR who are blind (regardless of age). This exemption is for all State taxes and County taxes not to exceed $5,000 in assessed value.
- Homestead Exemption 3 is a total exemption from all property taxes on the principal residence and 160 acres adjacent thereto of any resident of this state who is 65 years of age or older, provided the net annual taxable income for the person claiming the exemption and that of his or her spouse is twelve thousand dollars ($12,000) or less, as shown on such person's and spouse's latest Federal Income Tax Return or some other appropriate evidence... OR who is permanently and totally disabled, regardless of income or age.
- Homestead Exemption 4 is an exemption on the principal residence and 160 acres adjacent thereto of any resident of this state who is 65 years of age or older, regardless of income. This exemption is for the total assessed value of state tax and up to $4,000.00 of assessed value of county.
To prove disability, you must furnish a statement from two different sources (Physicians letters, Veterans Administration and Social Security are all acceptable.) . Exemptions should be applied for before December 31 of each year based upon status (owner occupied, age 65 or totally and permanently disabled or blind) of property and claimant before October 1st. By October 1st, a reclaim form is mailed to the property owner who has qualified before, allowing for the claim to be renewed by mail.
MILLAGE RATES AND TAX CALCULATION
PICKENS COUNTY MILLAGE RATES FOR THE 2014 TAX YEAR
Road & Bridge
District 1 & 2
TOTAL STATE, COUNTY
32.9 Sch. Dist. 1
34.1 Sch. Dist. 2
MILLAGE BY TAX DISTRICT (ASSESSED VALUE FACTORS)
01 & 12 County
|02 Aliceville||23.0|| (0.0571)|
|The amount of taxes paid is determined by multiplying the appropriate millage rate by the assessed value less the proper exemptions. The governing bodies of the state, county, cities and other taxing agencies set millage rates. A mill is one-tenth of one cent (.001). The factor in the table above is the sum of all of the taxing authorities' millage requests, which you can use to calculate a total tax bill.|
For example, an owner occupied residence valued at $100,000.00 would have an assessed value of 10% ($10,000.00). Multiply the assessed value ($10,000.00) by the appropriate millage rate (34.1 mills for county) to determine taxes owed ($10,000.00 X .0341 = $341.00). This is before any exemptions have been applied.
|BUSINESS PERSONAL PROPERTY |
All persons, corporations, partnerships, etc. owning business personal property, aircraft, commercial mobile or portable units are subject to ad valorem tax. The property must be listed and assessed in the Revenue Commissioner's Office after October Ist, but no later than December 31st each year. Failure to make an assessment by the 3rd Monday in January will result in a 10% penalty and fees being added to the tax bill. All business personal property is appraised by the County Revenue Commissioner for taxes, based on the cost new and allowance for depreciation due to age.
Follow this link to the Alabama Department of Revenue Property Tax Division to download the form used to report Business Personal Property:
Business Personal Property Return
Business Personal Property Return, Short Form
(This form requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. To get a free version, go to http://www.adobe.com/downloads/)
(Formerly Mobile Homes) The Alabama Manufactured Home Act (91-694), signed into law July 18, 1991, changed the way manufactured homes are treated for tax and revenue purposes in Alabama. Under the Act those manufactured homes located on the owner's property and not held for rent or lease will be assessed on the real property tax rolls in the Revenue Commissioner's Office. All others must be registered. Proof of ownership, along with a description that includes size, ID number, year made and model of the manufactured home should be brought to the Revenue Commissioner’s Office to make an assessment. The owner will receive a decal to display on the right front corner as proof that the taxes are paid. A homestead exemption may be claimed if you own the manufactured home, the property and live there as your principle residence as of October I. Proof of title (if 1990 of later model) and that sales tax has been paid must be provided at time of assessment/registration. All manufactured homes must be registered or assessed within 30 calendar days of purchase. Renewal of manufactured home registrations is October/November each year. There is a $10.00 penalty for late registration. Persons over 65 or permanently and totally disabled should request exemption information prior to registration/renewal.
Owners of 5 acres or more of farmland, pastureland or timberland that is producing agricultural products, livestock or wood products may apply for Current Use Valuation, that is, they may ask to have their land tax based upon its Current Use Value rather than its Fair Market Value. Current Use land values are set annually by the State of Alabama and are the same in all counties. In Pickens County, most qualifying landowners will save on their taxes if their land is under Current Use. Any owner of eligible property must make a formal application to the Revenue Commissioner's Office if he or she wishes to claim current use. The current use applications may be obtained from the Revenue Commissioner's Office at any time of the year, but under the law they must be filed with the Revenue Commissioner's Office no later than December 31st in order to qualify for the following tax year. After current use has been granted, the owner who made application for current use does not have to re-apply for subsequent years. However, if the property ownership is transferred or the name has been changed by deed or will, the new owner will have to file an application for current use or his or her taxes will be based on fair market value rather than current use values. By law, Current Use valuation cannot be removed without the owner's written request. Also, though this rarely occurs, the failure to remove current use valuation from lands that no longer qualify because of change of use can result in a 3-year roll-back of the tax difference plus penalties.
Follow this link for information about Current Use and to download a Current Use Application form at the Alabama Department of Revenue Property Tax Division:
Current Use Qualification and Application Procedures
(This form requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. To get a free version, go to http://www.adobe.com/downloads/)
|WHAT TO DO IF YOU ADD OR REMOVE IMPROVEMENTS|
The law requires that the owner, or their agent, must report to the Revenue Commissioner's Office no later than December 31st the addition or removal of improvements to their property made on or before October Ist of that year. The following are examples of improvements that should be reported:
New structures or additions such as swimming pools, patios, decks, carports, utilities or garages
Extensive repairs, remodeling or renovations
Adding a fireplace or extra bath.
You need not report normal maintenance such as re-roofing, minor repairs and painting.
|TIMETABLE FOR COLLECTING TAXES|
Taxes are collected on the following schedule for the year that ends on September 30:
Taxes are Due
Taxes are Delinquent
Citation Fee Added
|METHOD OF PAYMENT |
Taxes are due every year the first of October and are delinquent after the 31st of December. Payment may be made as follows:
|1. You may come to the Revenue Commissioner's Office at the courthouse and make payment in person by cash, check, money order or credit card.|
|2. You may pay by credit card on-line or by telephone. For credit card payments, go to our Pay Tax Online Page.|
3. You may pay by mail with check or money order to:
Michelle Kirk, Revenue Commissioner; P. O. Box 447; Carrollton, AL. 35447
Please list your account number(s) on your payment.
For more information about Property Tax Administration and Regulation in the State of Alabama, follow this link to the Alabama Department of Revenue, Property Tax Division: http://www.revenue.alabama.gov/advalorem/index.html
Credits: Our thanks to the Alabama Department of Revenue for valuable information
Pickens County Revenue Commissioners Office - 2011