Welcome to our A & L e-letter for this month of February 2013,
Cook County property owners received their First Installment real estate tax bill for the 2012 tax year this past January and payment is due on or before March 1, 2013. In Cook County, the due date for the First Installment property tax is always the first business day in March. Now is probably a good time to go over some of the basics of the assessment process and how we might be able to assist you in reducing your real estate property tax.
The First Installment is calculated based on a percentage of the total tax bill you paid in the prior year. It is exactly 55% of the prior year's tax bill. The purpose for this automatic calculation is to allow government the ability to obtain funds early enough in the year for distribution to its statutory charges, i.e., school districts, etc.
The Second Installment due date varies. This is because the Second Installment bill relies on the delivery of various sets of data by other state and county agencies. The second bill reflects the new assessed values, assessment appeals, exemptions, the State of Illinois equalization factor and the taxing-district tax rates. This delay gives you an opportunity to appeal your assessment before the Second Installment is issued. The Second Installment for the 2012 real estate tax year is anticipated to be delivered in July 2013.
A successful appeal can adjust your assessment before the Second Installment is delivered. Careful attention should be given to any filing deadlines. Currently all townships for the 2012 real estate tax year have completed their appeal deadlines. Those who have filed appeals for their 2012 real estate tax assessment year are awaiting their results now.
The appeals process for the 2013 real estate tax year has already begun. Cook County is divided into three areas for a triennial reassessment cycle. North and Northwest Townships will be reassessed in 2013, followed in 2014 with the South and Southwest Townships and then the City of Chicago again in 2015. We have prepared links to the local Assessor, Board of Review and Treasurer for you to keep abreast of some of these deadlines and information about filing appeals. We have also set out below the first townships the Assessor has announced for the filing of 2013 appeals. Your property's real estate tax bill will identify its township. If you are unsure about the township, please give us a call and we will assist you.