Ashburn, VA asked in Tax Law for Illinois

Q: I paid my property tax to the wrong account and the owner of the property is not paying back.

I mistakenly paid my Illinois property tax to the wrong PIN, and despite my efforts to contact the property owner, I haven't received a response. The Treasurer's Department sent an initial letter to the owner on March 15, 2024, and I also sent a letter at the beginning of March. Despite additional outreach from my property association, we've had no luck reaching the owner. I'm seeking advice on how to recover the funds. What further actions can I take?

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

A: First, you should consider contacting the Illinois Treasurer's Office or the county treasurer's office directly to explain the situation and inquire about possible procedures for correcting the payment made to the wrong Property Index Number (PIN). They may have a process in place for such situations and could provide guidance on the next steps to take. Document all communications and keep records of any correspondence or calls.

If the treasurer's office is unable to assist or if the process is lengthy, you may need to consult with a legal professional with experience in property tax matters. They can advise you on your rights and the potential for legal action to recover the funds. A lawyer can also help draft and send a more formal demand letter to the property owner, which may prompt a response.

Additionally, consider escalating the issue through local consumer protection agencies or a community legal aid organization if hiring an attorney is not feasible. They can offer support and advice on how to proceed in your jurisdiction. In the meantime, continue to document all efforts made to resolve the issue, as this will be helpful in any legal or formal proceedings that may follow.

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