Controller now processing property tax deferral applications; homeowners in counties hit by wildfires granted filing deadline extension

State Controller Betty T. Yee announced that, beginning today, applications are being processed for property tax deferment for the 2020-21 tax year, and homeowners living in counties affected by wildfires will have extra time to file.

Nancy Cardenas, Lassen County treasurer/tax collector, said this is a state program and property owners interested in using it should contact the state controller’s office (sco.ca.gov/ardtax_prop_tax_postponement.html or by calling (800) 952-5661).

California’s Property Tax Postponement Program, administered by Yee, allows homeowners who are seniors, are blind, or have a disability and who meet income, equity and other requirements to postpone payment of property taxes on their primary residence. In the 2019-2020 tax year, California homeowners were able to postpone more than $4 million in residential property taxes.

California law provides tax relief to homeowners who file a claim with their county assessor within 12 months of damage or destruction of property due to natural disaster. This includes the ability to have the property reassessed in its current state, and to rebuild a like or similar structure and retain the pre-disaster property value for tax purposes.

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Last week, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order extending the PTP filing deadline for homeowners in counties affected by wildfire, to allow counties time to perform reassessments due to fire losses. While the standard PTP filing deadline is Feb. 10, 2021, homeowners in counties hit by wildfires will have until June 1, 2021, to apply for the program. Funding for the program is limited, and applications will be processed in the order received.

“This extension could help California homeowners receive tax assistance in a time of critical need,” said Yee, California’s chief fiscal officer. “I encourage property owners to file their PTP applications as soon as possible so we can begin processing and work with counties on reassessment where needed. If property tax postponement fits their needs, I want the option to be available to them.”

The governor’s executive order extending the filing deadline currently covers the counties of Lassen, Butte, Del Norte, Fresno, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Los Angeles, Madera, Mariposa, Mendocino, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Plumas, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Sierra, Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Tehama, Trinity, Tulare, Tuolumne, Yolo, and Yuba.

Applications and additional PTP program details can be found online at sco.ca.gov/ardtax_prop_tax_postponement.html or by calling (800) 952-5661.

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