Do not let the tax code intimidate you into not claiming certain service related benefits and exclusions. You can access the links to all of the states at http://www.military.com/benefits/content/veteran-state-benefits/state-veterans-benefits-directory.html. Also look for the link to your State's department of veteran affairs. A real property tax exemption is one type of military service related tax benefit. For instance, North Carolina provides an exclusion for "$45,000 of the appraised value of the permanent residence of an honorably discharged veteran who has a total and permanent disability that is service-connected..." Law students and/or legal professionals are available to assist service members and veterans, and you can find their contact information under Clinics & Resources at www.forloveofcountry.net/links.
In some locations it is a straightforward process to appeal your property assessment while in others the process will challenge a person's ability and patience. Remember that you are actually appealing your property assessments. When you decide to start the process, get a copy of the government's documentation on which it based your property taxes (i.e. assessments). Next, perform research and document your research. Identify comparable property sales in your area for the previous 3 years, which date range could vary depending on your location. Include printouts from sales you plan to use to persuade the government representative(s). Study and summarize the sales research before your negotiation with the local government representative. Additional information is available online for some areas, such as Cook County Illinois at http://www.ehow.com/how_6982515_do-assessment-cook-county_-illinois. Whether your initial appeal is successful, there are sometimes additional ways to appeal, but identify the deadlines.
As with any legal process a professional's advice might prove highly beneficial. You should consider consulting a realtor friend to assist with the research. If in doubt, consult a licensed real property/tax attorney in your area. Prior to consulting an attorney, attempt to get legal assistance through ABA Home Front and contact the veteran's legal clinic in your area (See Clinics & Resources at www.forloveofcountry.net/links). Even if you are not eligible for help from a clinic, some private attorneys will not charge more than their consultation fee if the attorney is unsuccessful in lowering your taxes. An attorney might find an appeal will likely increase your taxes. Finally, consider an appeal every year because a property owner could make successful appeals on an annual basis depending on the real estate market.
Do not procrastinate if you believe you qualify for the benefits and programs mentioned above. You could save significant amounts of money.
Disclaimer: This article is not intended to endorse the services of any vendor mentioned herein. It is intended to make readers aware of available government benefits and resources. Consult a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction for legal advice.