1. I have never received my bill, or received it late, do I still have to pay the penalty?
Yes, the failure to mail a statement or the failure of a property owner to receive a statement will not affect the validity of the taxes or interest prescribed by law (New York State Real Property Tax Law 922). In addition, neither the Receiver of Taxes nor any other official has legal authority to waive statutory penalty charges. These are fixed by the Real Property Tax Law. If they are waived, the collecting officer will be personally responsible. As all records are audited by State examiners, there is absolutely no discretion in this matter. The Constitution and the Law of the State mandates the procedure.
2. If I mail my payment on the due date do I have to pay a penalty?
In order to avoid any possibility of delay by mail, we suggest that if payment is to be made within the last few days of the month in which due, make certain that you witness a TIMELY OFFICIAL UNITED STATES POSTMARK being affixed to the envelope. Postal meters and foreign postmarks are not acceptable. New York State Law provides that a municipality cannot waive penalties on Real Estate Taxes received after the due date for any reason.
3. What if my mailing address changes?
Address changes must be made in writing. Notify either the Tax Office or the Assessor’s Office by mail or fax if you wish to change your mailing address.
4. Can I prepay my taxes?
The warrant constitutes the mantle of authority for the collecting officer to receive the taxes. Therefore, the warrant must be regarded as the instrument which empowers the collecting officer to begin the collection. Collection Authority cannot begin prior to the date of the warrant. Rockland County tries to sign in the last week of December to enable property owners the opportunity to prepay in current year.
Helpful Hints from the Receiver of Taxes
When your mortgage is paid in full
In order to make sure you will receive the tax bills prior to the penalty period (October for School Taxes and February for Town/County Taxes), you must notify the Tax Office in your Town and Village. Send or fax a copy of the “Satisfaction of Mortgage” letter from your lender.
Each Village bills and collects taxes separately. The Town of Orangetown does not collect taxes for the Villages.
Many residents have their taxes escrowed with lending institutions. The Town updates bank codes prior to each billing cycle. It is the lending institution’s responsibility to notify the Town of any additions or deletions of accounts. Many banks contract with Tax Service Organizations (TSO’s), which are agencies that service escrow accounts for the banks. These organizations provide us with a large listing of their customers and their identifying account numbers. The larger organizations do this primarily by computer disc. In the event that a resident receives a bill that should have gone to the bank, it is still the responsibility of the resident to forward that bill to the bank that holds their mortgage.
Non-Receipt of Tax Bill
If the homeowner does not receive a bill, it is the homeowner’s responsibility to know that taxes are due. Please call our office immediately and we will issue a duplicate bill. The failure to mail a statement or the failure of the property owner to receive a statement will not affect the validity of the taxes or interest prescribed by law (New York State Real Property Tax Law 922). If you should have received a bill, but have not during the first week of September and January, please contact this office for a duplicate bill.
To assist our elderly and disable residents, third-party notification of tax bill is offered. Property owners who are disabled or 65 years of age or older, and own a one, two, or three-family house, may designate an adult-consenting third party to receive duplicate copies of tax bills and notices of unpaid taxes. In order to receive this service, one must fill out a Third-Party Notification Form RP-923, which is available in the Tax Office.
All exemptions are handled by the Assessor’s Office. Any questions, please call:
(845) 359-5100, ext. 2224.