Columbus, OH asked in Land Use & Zoning, Real Estate Law and Tax Law for New York

Q: I live in a small town in Orleans County, New York. Many of us just got our new property assessments .

Our assessments went up a minimum of $40,000 per property!!!! Our county is one of the poorest in the state and none of us have improved our property. The law used to be the assessers could not raise the assessment more than $10,000 in one year. I can't find that law now. Can you give me the laws regarding how much the assessments can be raised in one year? I need what code, page, part, etc. etc. so when we appeal we can site where the law is. I fought this once before and won. Now I can't find the laws. Thank you for any help you can give us. We are desparate!

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Tax Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In New York State, the rules for property assessments are governed by the Real Property Tax Law (RPTL). According to RPTL Section 305, property assessments must be based on their market value, and should be made at least once every four years.

Regarding the increase in assessments, RPTL Section 305-a sets a limit on the percentage of increase that a local assessor can make to the assessed value of a property. For example, in an agricultural district, the increase can't exceed 10 percent or $10,000, whichever is greater, in any one year. In other cases, the increase can't exceed 6 percent or $20,000, whichever is greater, in any one year.

If you believe that your assessment has been unfairly increased, you have the right to appeal. You can find information about the appeals process on the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance website.

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