The Taxpayer's Role

Your Role as a Taxpayer

You can play an effective role in the process if you know your rights, understand the remedies available to you, and fulfill your responsibilities as a property owner and taxpayer.

Know Your Rights

  • You have the right to equal and uniform tax appraisals. Your property value should be the same as that placed on other properties that are similar or comparable to yours.
  • Unless your property qualifies for special appraisal, such as for agricultural land, you have the right to have it taxed on its January 1 market value.
  • You have the right to receive all tax exemptions or other tax relief for which you qualify.
  • You have the right to notices of changes in your property value or in your exemptions.
  • You have the right to know about a taxing unit's proposed tax rate increase and to have time to comment on it.

Understand Your Remedies

  • If you believe your property has been appraised for more than its January 1 market value, or if you were denied an exemption or agricultural appraisal, you may protest to the appraisal review board. If you don't agree with the review board, you may take your case to court.
  • You may speak out at public hearings when your elected officials are deciding how to spend your taxes and setting the tax rate.
  • You and your fellow taxpayers may limit major tax increases in an election to roll back or limit the tax rate.

Fulfill Your Responsibilities

  • You must apply for exemptions, agricultural appraisal, and other forms of tax relief before the deadlines.
  • You must see that your property is listed correctly in the appraisal records. If your property is omitted from the records and escapes taxation, it becomes subject to a back assessment. In the event a back assessment occurs, special omitted property interest at the rate of 1% monthly may be due in addition to the taxes. Back assessments may cover up to five prior years in the case of real property (land and improvements), and up to two prior years for business personal property.
  • If you own tangible personal property used for the production of income (business personal property), you must annually render it to the chief appraiser. Personal property which escapes taxation because of failure to render becomes subject to back assessment when discovered by the appraisal district.
  • You must pay your taxes on time.