MCAD warns public over solicitations on exemption

What’s the old song, “It Ain’t Necessarily So?”

The Milam County Appraisal District (MCAD) is warning county taxpayers about mailers received by area residents which apparently offer to prepare unneeded documents relating to homestead exemptions for a fee.

“A number of local residents have contacted the MCAD,” Chief Appraiser Pat Moraw said. “Mail they have received concerns filing for homestead exemptions to ‘get a discount on their property taxes for a charge to prepare documents plus filing fee’.”

Moraw said there is no charge to file for a residential homestead exemption or any other tax exemption available to property owners. “Property owners who qualify for the exemptions can certainly save money but the savings is at no cost to the taxpayer.”

Moraw said the documents in the mail-out actually refer to the designation of homestead as addressed in the Texas Property Code.

“That’s different than the homestead tax exemption as addressed under the Texas Property Tax Code,” she said.

Moraw said while the definition of homestead under the property code does have legal purposes, a reduction in property tax is not one of them.

“The appraisal district cannot assist property owners in the filing of ‘designation of homestead’,” she said.

Moraw said a separate mailout referenced information which is actually available upon request from the appraisal district or at no charge on the MCAD website (Select “ Milam” under “ View Property Info.”)

“The property number used is a cross-reference number assigned by the appraisal district and is not a legal description or reference,” she said.

“Property owners who need a copy of their deed may obtain a copy at the county clerk’s office for a fee less than the quoted ‘processing’ fee,” Moraw said.

Property owners are urged to “ask questions and seek assistance before paying money.”

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