Property in Overlapping Appraisal Districts
CADs to Set One Appraised Value on Same Property
The Property Tax Code requires county appraisal districts (CADs) to work together in listing and appraising property that lies in more than one CAD’s boundaries. Beginning January 1, 2004, the Texas Legislature modified that process to require one appraised or market value on each of those properties where agreement can not be reached. CADs that don’t agree must use the lowest appraised or market value. The annual notice that a CAD sends property owners of these properties has changed for the new requirement.
CAD boundaries don't follow county boundaries but follow the boundaries of the taxing units that participate in the CAD. So, CADs may have overlapping boundaries and appraise the same properties for different taxing units. For example, one CAD may list and appraise a property for the city, while a neighboring CAD does the work on that property for the school district.
The Texas Legislature has tried various ways to treat properties appraised by two or more CADs.
In tax years 1998 and 1999, the Legislature required CADs that didn’t agree on the same proposed value by May 1 to average the proposed values. Property owners protested to only one ARB on the overlapping property’s value. If one ARB changed the property's appraised value, then the other CADs' chief appraisers changed the property's appraised value in their CADs.
In tax years 2000 through 2003, the Legislature returned to pre-1998 law that required CADs to coordinate their appraisal activities “to the extent practicable” so as to “encourage” and facilitate the appraisal of the same property at the same value. CADs did not have to agree on a proposed value for a property. Protesting property owners had to file protests with each district’s ARB if they disagreed with each CAD’s proposed value.
The Texas Legislature passed the law change in two different bills. House Bills 730 and 1082 both add subsection (d) to Tax Code Section 6.025.
Effective January 1, 2004, Section 6.025(d) requires chief appraisers that appraise the same property in an overlapping territory to agree on the appraised or market value of that property by May 1. If they do not agree, then the appraisers must use the lowest appraised or market value.
If a CAD’s appraisal review board (ARB) or a court later reduces that value, then that CAD’s chief appraiser will notify the other chief appraisers who must reduce the value on all related appraisal rolls.
Notice to owners
Section 6.025 requires CADs to send property owners that have the same property in two or more districts a written advisory on these new requirements. The Comptroller’s revised notice (Form 50-271), is required by law.
The Comptroller's Property Tax Division (PTD) will mail this revised notice to each CAD with other new and amended forms. It is also available on the Comptroller’s property tax forms Web page at www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/taxforms/02-forms.html#Other.
CADs may send this notice to property owners at any time after January 1, 2004. Section 6.025 also states that CADs may send this notice when they send the notices of appraised value, usually mailed in April.
What didn’t change
Property owners are required to notify each CAD that appraises the property of any changes in current mailing address, property ownership or other information that helps the CAD list and appraise their property.
Property owners must apply to each CAD to receive special appraisal for agricultural or timber land based on the land’s productivity value or for any of the other special appraisals or exemptions.
Owners required to render their property must do so to each CAD in which their property is located. A property rendition identifies, describes and gives the location of an owner’s taxable property on January 1.
CADs must share information with the other CADs to eliminate differences in information and coordinate their appraisal activities on the same property.
Property owners continue to be required to file protests with each ARB if they disagree with their property’s value or a CAD action.
For questions about the new law or revised notice, contact PTD's Technical Assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-252-9121. In Austin, call 512/305-9999.