Are you thinking about appealing your property taxes? Maybe you’ve already got the ball rolling. If so, good for you! It’s estimated that 90% of property owners in Texas don’t protest their taxes, and they should! According to Gill, Denson & Company tax advisor – Joe Gomberg, most taxpayers throughout the state of Texas are probably paying too much. “The tax code is written so it pushes people away from appealing,” he said.
“The county appraisal districts are known for using inaccurate information and insufficient methods to inspect your home which leaves plenty of room for error.” Words like binding arbitration and other terms might sound scary and intimidating if it’s your first time protesting your taxes, but once you understand the terminology, you’ll feel less stressed and more confident. While not every appeals case leads to arbitration, binding arbitration is still one of those important terms that you’ll want to have a basic knowledge of as you proceed with your property tax appeal. In brief, here’s what you need to know about binding arbitration:
What Is Binding Arbitration
Binding arbitration is an alternative to getting tax relief when a hearing with the Appraisal Review Board (ARB) is unsuccessful. An arbitrator is a neutral person (also referred to as a mediator) on a state panel assigned to carefully examine the case. The arbitrator then has the final say just like a judge. The arbitrator’s decision is final and binding to all parties. The arbitration process is less formal than a trial or courtroom hearing.
Litigation vs Arbitration
Both litigation and arbitration are the result of not getting the results you’re seeking through an informal process or ARB hearing. However, litigation is different in that it’s the last resort for any property tax appeal and requires an attorney. Litigation is usually best for tax disputes over properties valued at over $5 million. Although it’s highly unlikely, litigation can still lead to a trial or court hearing. A tax professional from Gill, Denson & Company can help you decide whether litigation or arbitration is best for your case.
When Is Binding Arbitration Appropriate
Binding arbitration is usually the best choice for residential homeowners whose properties are valued under $5 million while litigation is better for properties above $5 million. According to Gomberg, binding arbitration has proven successful for first time homeowners to those who own luxury homes. Taxpayers have 60 days after receiving the ARB’s decision to file for binding arbitration.
Gill, Denson & Company Can Help
The tax consultants at Gill, Denson & Company are highly successful at negotiating through the arbitration process, often resulting in a win from a financial standpoint. Gomberg stressed the importance of having someone experienced guide you through the process, saying, “We can help you identify things that will help your case, maximize reductions, save you money and alleviate your stress.”
If you’re a Texas property owner in need of assistance with your property taxes, reach out to the professionals at Gill, Denson & Company. Our professionals help you reduce your taxes by aggressively appealing your property tax appraisals.