Property Tax Digest Bills
What is a Digest?
The Tax Digest is a permanent record generated from real, personal, and business personal property records and values compiled by the Tax Assessor’s office.
What does it take to make a change to the permanent record?
An act of Government.
The Board of Commissioners must approve all reductions to the digest with the exception of a Court Order or a Board of Equalization Decision (when the assessment of property was appealed).
By changing the permanent record values the net taxable amount may increase or decrease the final Digest figure which also adjusts the total amount that each entity would have received based on the original document.
These changes are not in great amounts but adjustments due to many factors play a part in the amount of funds each entity actually receives.
What determines the amount of tax you pay?
Each entity sets and adopts their budget for maintenance and operations for the fiscal year.
A millage rate is set and adopted based on the amount of funds needed to satisfy the various budgets adopted for each entity.
This is accomplished by using the 40% net taxable values on the digest multiplied by the millage rate to equal the funds needed to operate the County.
Who oversees the Digest process?
Before collection on a digest may begin it must be certified by the Tax Commissioner and delivered to the Georgia Department of Revenue.
The Department of Revenue reviews all advertisements to the citizens and the steps taken to adopt the millage rate prior to issuing the order for collection to the Tax Commissioner. This process happens every year.
After the collection order is issued then the Tax Commissioner can start the billing process.
When are property tax bills mailed and due?
Real Estate, Personal, and Business Personal Property Tax Bills are mailed by September 15th and due November 15th each year. Owners are given 60 days from issue date to make payment.
State Law allows the office to accept a U. S. Postmark (not postage meter) of November 15th as evidence of timely payment.
Who should receive a tax bill and where will it be mailed?
The property owner of record (listed on deed filed in the Clerk of Superior Courts office) as of 1 January of each year.
If you purchased property after 1 January the bill will be mailed to the owner of record as of 1 January. This individual should forward the bill to you but if this doesn’t happen it is the New Owners responsibility to contact the Tax Commissioner’s office to obtain a copy of the bill and make payment by the due date.
Addresses are required to be provided by the property owner or their attorney when filing the deed at the time of purchase.
Address changes for the next years billing (before August 1st ) should be made with the Tax Assessor’s office.
Address changes for bills that have already been issued must be submitted to the Tax Commissioner’s office to ensure proper correspondence.
What about Escrow account payments? How will the bill get to them?
Most Mortgage companies have a Tax Service which gathers the tax information for them and acts as a go between on your behalf and you are required to do nothing.
Mortgage Companies that do not have a Tax Service will let the borrower know if an action is required on their part. If your mortgage company requests for you to forward your bill to them remember to write your loan number on the bill before you send it because if the bill was issued to the owner as of 1 January and you are responsible for the bill when it is issued your mortgage company has information on you not the previous owner.
When does interest and penalties apply and how much are they?
Interest and penalties apply to payments received over the counter or U. S. Postmarked after December 20th.
Interest accrues at the rate of 12% per year (1% per month or a part of a month).
Cost is $5.00 for bills under $100.00 and $10.00 for bills over $100.01.
A one time 10% penalty applies when the bill becomes 90 days delinquent, except to homesteaded bills that are under $500.00
A $10.00 FiFa charge is added once the Tax Lien is recorded with the Clerk of Superior Court (this includes filing and cancellation fees).