Frequently Asked Questions

Why did I receive a letter from Spiotti & Esposito, P.C. about my home?

You received a letter from our Firm because we reviewed public records of all of the sales in your community and have determined that your property tax assessment is not in-line with sales of comparable properties.  Therefore, we believe that filing a property tax appeal could lower your annual property taxes.


What happens if Spiotti & Esposito can successfully reduce my property taxes?

If we successfully reduce your property tax assessment through litigation or by way of a settlement with the Municipality, your assessment will be lowered retroactively to January 1 of the appeal year.  As a result, your Municipality will either issue a credit for the savings in your 4th quarter tax bill or issue a refund check for the amount of the refund you are owed.


When do I pay the Law Firm’s fee?

You only pay our Firm’s legal fee after you have received the benefit from the new assessment, either in the form of a refund check from the town or a credit in your quarterly tax bill.  Afterwards, you will receive an invoice for our services.  If you have already an invoice from our Firm, you can pay on line here.


What happens if my tax assessment is not lowered?

If we cannot lower your assessment, we do not charge any legal fee.  You will only be responsible for the nominal filing fee that the County Tax Board (or Tax Court of New Jersey) charges to process the appeal.


When will my appeal be filed?

We start to file Petitions of Appeal in February and continue through April 1st.  If your Municipality underwent a municipal-wide revaluation this year, the deadline to file is May 1st.  Often times, the County Boards of Taxation assign hearing dates based upon the time the Petition of Appeal was filed.  Likewise, the Tax Court of New Jersey schedules trials based upon the date the Complaint was filed and the Tax Court’s overall caseload. Therefore, the earlier we receive your signed Fee Agreement and filing fee, the sooner we can file your appeal and receive a hearing date from the County Board or a first trial notice from the Tax Court of New Jersey.


How can I hire Spiotti & Esposito?

Simply fill out the Fee Agreement that you received and forward it to our Firm via email, fax or regular mail.  Remember to mail the filing fee check to our Firm with a copy of the completed Fee Agreement at 271 US Highway 46 – Suite F105-106, Fairfield, NJ 07004.  For appeals filed to the County Tax Board, the filing fee is based upon the assessment of the property on appeal.  The following is a summary of the filing fees for County Board appeals:

Assessment Amount

Filing Fee

 Assessed Value under $150,000  $5 – $10
 $150,000 or more, but less than $ 500,000  $25 – $30
 $500,000 or more, but less than $ 1,000,000  $100 – $105
 $1,000,000 or more  $150 – $155


What happens after I hire Spiotti & Esposito?

After we receive your Fee Agreement and filing fee,  our Firm will file your Petition of Appeal with the County Board of Taxation or Tax Court of New Jersey.  For appeals filed to the County Board of Taxation, the Tax Board will then assign a hearing date between April 1st and December 1st.  We will notify you once we receive a hearing date (you are not required to attend the hearing).  Our office will provide evidence to the County Tax Board and the Municipality to show that your property is over assessed.  We will try to amicably resolve your appeal with the Municipality.  If we are unable to reach a settlement with the Municipality that fairly reflects the fair market value of your property, we will present the case for a decision from the County Tax Board.  When we receive the County Board’s judgment, we will discuss the results with you and your option to pursue the matter to the Tax Court.  Appeals filed to the Tax Court of New Jersey (either directly or on appeal from a County Tax Board judgment) are scheduled for trial based upon the date the Complaint was filed and the Tax Court’s overall caseload.  In either case, we will update you as your appeal progresses from initial filing to final resolution.


Do I have to continue to pay the taxes on my property after an appeal is filed?

Yes.  In New Jersey, your taxes must be current to appeal the assessment.  If the taxes are delinquent the town can ask the County Tax Board (or the Tax Court depending upon what venue the case is pending) to dismiss your appeal.


What else do I have to do?

Nothing.  The attorneys at the Firm have successfully resolved over 10,000 property tax appeals.  We will take care of everything that needs to be done and we will contact you if you we need any further information.


I received a letter from the town requesting Income and Expense (Chapter 91) information, should I respond?

If you own an investment property (also referred to as an income-producing property) it is critical that you timely respond to a Chapter 91 request from the municipality.  Failing to respond to the Municipality’s Chapter 91 request in a timely fashion can result in the dismissal of your tax appeal.  For a complete explanation of Chapter 91, please click on the following article entitled Chapter 91, Past Present and Future recently published by our Firm.

In recent years, the Tax Court of New Jersey (and the County Boards of Taxation) has dismissed appeals when there has been no response but also in cases where the response was found to be inaccurate or misleading.  Therefore, how you respond is as important as whether you respond.  If you need assistance with a Chapter 91 request, please contact Jim for a free review via telephone or “e-mail” or Rob via phone or “e-mail”.


I filed an appeal myself and now I need help, is it too late to hire our Firm?

Frequently property owners file an appeal on their own but soon recognize that they do not have the time or resources necessary to thoroughly prepare for a successful appeal.  In these cases, the Firm can substitute in for the property owner and handle the appeal.   If you find that you cannot continue to pursue your appeal on your own, simply click on the following link and provide us with your name, telephone number and e-mail address (if you have one) along with the full address of the property you would like us to assist you with.  Please also include the date of your County Tax Board hearing.  If we think we can help reduce your assessment, we will send you a Fee Agreement for you to complete.  After we receive the fully executed Fee Agreement, we will enter our appearance with the County Tax Board and the Municipality.


Disclaimer:
The materials on this website are provided for informational and/or educational purposes only. Nothing contained on this website and/or related links is intended to constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon in lieu of consultation with appropriate legal advisers in your own jurisdiction.  Transmission of the information contained on this website and/or related links is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship between the author(s), the website designer(s) and you or any other user.  Please click here to read the entire legal disclaimer associated with this website.