Property Tax Guide
When are Property Tax Returns Due?
Property taxes are due on property that was owned on January 1 for the current tax year. The law provides that property tax returns are due to be filed with the county tax receiver or the county tax commissioner between
January 1 and April 1 (O.C.G.A. 48-5-18).
Click this link for specific information on where to file a return in your county.
Residents of Georgia are required to file a return of their real property in the county where the real property is located. Residents of Georgia are required to file a return on personal property in the county where they have a legal residence, unless the personal property is used in connection with a business located elsewhere.
Boats that are kept in a county other than where the owner lives are returned where they are kept for at least 180 days or more out of the year.
Airplanes that are hangared in a county other than where the owner lives are returned to the county where they are hangared.
Nonresidents that have real or personal property located in Georgia are required to file a return for the property in the county where the property is located.
No Requirement to File a Return Every Year
If a taxpayer filed a property tax return or paid taxes on their property the year before and does not file a return on their property for the current tax year, then they are considered to have filed a return on the same property at the same valuation as the year before. And they are considered to have claimed the same homestead exemptions and personal property exemptions as they had in the previous year.
Penalty for Failure to File Return
A 10% penalty will be assessed on any property upon which a taxpayer fails to file a property tax return before the expiration of the time to file returns: for instance, property that was acquired since their last return or property upon which improvements were made.
Real Estate Transfer Tax Form Considered Filing Return
If a taxpayer acquires property in the previous tax year and a real estate transfer tax form was filed and the real estate transfer tax paid, then they are considered to have filed a property tax return on the same property at the same valuation as was transferred in the previous year. But if any improvements are made to the property after it is transferred, they should file a property tax return for the current tax year. And they must still file for homestead exemption and personal property exemption.
Payment of Taxes
The Tax Commissioner in the county is responsible for collecting property taxes for the county, school and State. And in some counties the Tax Commissioner may collect property taxes for the city.
Taxes are Due by December 20 – Unless otherwise specifically stated in the law, property taxes are due by December 20.
An Earlier Deadline – Some counties have an earlier deadline for payment of property taxes, and some require the taxes to be paid in two installments.
In counties where the real property is located in more than one county, the tax is paid to the county where the majority of the property is located. The county tax commissioner or the county tax receiver in that county will remit the proportionate share of taxes to the other counties.
The County Tax Commissioner’s Office for more information on billing and collection of property taxes.
The County Board of Tax Assessor’s Office for more information on property assessment values and appealing a property assessment.