Parish assessor reminds homeowners of special assessment levels

St. Charles Parish Assessor Tab Troxler said there are several special assessment levels available to homeowners in St. Charles Parish – including one for people 65 and older, ones for people who are disabled or disabled veterans, and one for the surviving spouse of a person who died while on active duty as a member of the armed forces, or while performing their duties as a law enforcement or fire protection officer.

The special assessment level, Troxler explained, will “freeze” the assessed value of the homestead. In other words, the property value at the time the freeze is applied will not change during future reassessment periods. The special assessment level will remain the same for as long as the applicant owns and resides in the home and income does not exceed the maximum income set by the legislature. This special assessment level is lost if improvements in excess of 25% of the home’s value are added.

“It doesn’t freeze you from paying taxes or from having taxes go up, but it does freeze the value of your home,” Troxler said of the special assessment levels.

He added that his office has made a big push to get information related to these special assessment levels to the public, including have mailed out information on them to every homeowner in the parish and including the information in the assessor office’s annual report as well.

Troxler said in 2020 there were 2,052 St. Charles Parish homes that qualified for special assessment levels. That number is currently up to 2,647.

“There are a couple of things going on here,” he said of the increase of qualifying homes. “One is a lot of public information, and one is that the age of many homeowners is going up.”

Troxler said that to apply for the special levels homeowners need to visit the assessor’s office, which is located on the first floor of the St. Charles Parish Courthouse at 15045 River Road in Hahnville. The office’s regular hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Age 65 Freeze applies when at least one owner of the home is age 65 or older. Adjusted gross income of all owners cannot exceed $100,000 for the year. Required documents to apply the freeze in include the owner’s driver’s license or birth certificate and federal tax return.

The Disability Freeze applies only when the owner of the home is permanently and totally disabled. Adjusted gross income, combined for all owners, cannot exceed $100,000 for the year and the owner’s eligibility must be annually recertified each year the freeze is in effect. Required documents to receive this freeze include a Disability Awards Letter, driver’s license or birth certificate and federal tax return.

There are two special assessment levels available only to veterans.

The Disabled Veterans Freeze is applied when the owner of the home has a service-connected disability with a 50% or higher disability rating. Adjusted Gross Income, combined for all owners, cannot exceed $100,000 for the year and required documents include a Disability Awards Letter, driver’s license or birth certificate and federal tax return.

The Disabled Veterans Additional Homestead Exemption is applied when the owner of the home is a veteran with a 100% service-connected disability rating, or the surviving spouse of a veteran with a 100% service-connected disability rating. Required documents include a Disability Awards Letter, driver’s license or birth certificate and federal tax return.

One other special assessment level is available, and that is the Surviving Spouse Additional Homestead Exemption. The owner of the home must be an unmarried surviving spouse of a person who died while on active duty as a member of the armed forces, or while performing their duties as a law enforcement or fire protection officer. The property must have been owned and occupied by the deceased service member, law enforcement or fire protection officer at the time of death. Required documents include a Disability Awards Letter, driver’s license or birth certificate and federal tax return.

“If there’s one legacy that I want to leave as being assessor, it’s that I did a great deal to educate the public,” Troxler said. “Not only about the assessor’s office, but property taxes as a whole.”

Troxler said his office’s website – https://stcharlesassessor.com – contains information and videos for residents and homeowners to better understand property taxes, reassessment levels and other important matters.

 

About Monique Roth 759 Articles
Roth has both her undergraduate and graduate degree in journalism, which she has utilized in the past as an instructor at Southeastern Louisiana University and a reporter at various newspapers and online publications. She grew up in LaPlace, where she currently resides with her husband and three daughters.

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