Homeowner Overcharged On Property Taxes For Two Decades. How Much Should City Repay?

An 84-year-old widow recently found out she’s been paying too much property tax on her home for more than two decades because of an error by the original assessor. But the city has only offered to pay her back for one year of the overcharge.

The small, one-story Racine, WI, home has a pair of windows that look out from the attic. And when the original tax assessor came by to look at the property in 1987, he didn’t go inside and assumed that the attic was actually another bedroom, which meant another 500 square feet.

It wasn’t until 2008, after her husband passed away, that the woman went to the city looking for some way to bring down her tax burden, when someone noticed the error.

“We paid for 500 square feet of living space that we never had,” she tells Milwaukee’s Fox6 News.

The city, which has offered to repay her the most recent overcharge of around $450, acknowledged the error but says it’s a homeowner’s responsibility to notice these sorts of mistakes.

The homeowner disagrees, pointing out, “if I owed them, they’d want their money.”

How much — if any — of the overpaid taxes do you think the city owes the homeowner?


Racine woman overcharged on property taxes for 24 years [Fox6now.com]

Thanks to Harper for the tip!

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