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General Questions/Answers

1. How do I find my property account number?
Answer: The 15-digit property number is assigned by the Benton County Assessor. It is shown on your tax statement in the upper right corner. You can also obtain the number by calling the Benton County Assessor at (509)735-2394. Or you can call the Treasurer's Office. Refer to our contact numbers on the Contact Us page.

2. How do I change my mailing address on my statement?
Answer: You can notify us of a change of address by writing the new address on the remittance stub you include when you return a tax payment. Or you can write us requesting such a change. You can also submit a request electronically.

3. How do I change my name on my statement?
Answer: Spelling corrections or similar minor changes to the taxpayer name can be made by writing the change on your tax remittance stub you use to make your payment. Legally changing the ownership/taxpayer name requires a Real Estate Excise Tax Affidavit be filed with our office. These forms can be obtained online but must be submitted in person or via the mail.

4. What are personal property taxes?
Answer: Personal property includes the business equipment owned by anyone who operates a business in Benton County. Personal property tax rates are the same as real property and payment dates are generally the same. Except if the first half is not paid by 4/30, the entire tax must be paid. Also, collection (referred to as “distraint”) starts immediately when a tax is delinquent. Personal property taxes are a lien on any real property or other business asset owned by the same person.     

 5. I’ve sold this property. What should I do with the statement?
Answer: You should have handled the property tax during your real estate closing. You prorated the amount due for taxes between the buyer and seller. And then taxes may (or may not) have been settled with the County Treasurer. It might be useful to forward the statement on to the new owner or you may save the statement for your records.

6. What are omitted taxes?
Answer: Omitted taxes are for improvements (generally buildings) to the property to which value should have been assessed in prior years but wasn't. Omitted assessments can be added for up to 3 prior years. Taxes are based on the assessed value and levy rate appropriate for each prior year. You get an additional year to pay omitted taxes. The regular taxes (non-omitted) remain due in February when the tax statement is received and will become late if half is not paid by April 30th. 

7. This is a worthless piece of land and I do not want it. Will my credit suffer if I just let it go to foreclosure sale?
Answer: Delinquent tax information is not reported to any credit agency. Your name will appear in the foreclosure notice of delinquent taxes in the Legal Notices column of a local newspaper. Any amount received at sale that is more than the taxes and collection costs due will be given to you.        

8. When does foreclosure begin and what is involved?
Answer: Real property foreclosure begins once the real property taxes are a full 3 years delinquent. Personal property is put into collection immediately upon becoming delinquent. Both processes start in June of each year culminating in final sale in November. Visit our Foreclosure and Distraint page for more information.

9. What are these “other charges” on the tax bill?
Answer: By law, the treasurer can bill and collect for other types of government charges when sending out the tax bill. This is generally a cheaper method of billing customers as everything appears on one bill. We bill for the following government assessments: Weed Control, Soil Conservation, Mosquito District, 2 Irrigation Districts, and Horticulture Pest and Disease Control . These assessments are not a tax, they are a charge for value received as determined by the appropriate governing body. The charge does create an enforceable lien on your property.

10. I want to protest the tax I owe. What can I do?
Answer: If you believe the tax is unlawful or excessive and want to preserve your right to seek a refund in court you must submit a separate written statement saying you are paying the tax under protest and stating all of the reasons why you believe the tax paid under protest is unlawful or excessive. This statement must accompany your tax payment.

This statement does not do anything to change the tax you are charged and we provide no response to the statement. The letter merely preserves a legal right to pursue action. You must take that action by following the appeal process (and meet the timelines) done through the Benton County Board of Equalization. Also, if you have an issue with any of the individual taxes, you should be contacting the governing body of the entity with your questions.

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