Texans who are age 65 or older or who are disabled as defined by law may postpone paying current and delinquent property taxes on their homes by signing a tax deferral affidavit at the local County Appraisal District office.
Once the affidavit is on file, taxes are deferred ó but not cancelled ó as long as the owner continues to own and live in the home.
Taxes accumulate with 8 percent interest per year.
The law extends the tax deferral to the surviving spouse of the person who deferred taxes on the homestead if the surviving spouse was at least 55 years old when the deceased spouse died.
A filed tax deferral affidavit keeps homeowners from losing their homesteads because of delinquent property taxes.
A pending sale to foreclose on the homesteadís tax lien will also cease as a result of filing a tax deferral affidavit.
In addition, no taxing unit can start or continue a lawsuit to collect delinquent taxes once an affidavit is filed.
There are no penalties on delinquent taxes during the deferral period; however, a tax deferral does not cancel penalties that were already due.
All deferred taxes and interest become due when the homeowner or surviving spouse no longer own and live in the home.
If the tax debt remains unpaid at that time, penalties may be imposed and taxing units may take legal action to collect the past due amount.
For further details about property tax deferral, contact your local County Appraisal District.
Further information is also available on the Comptrollerís website, www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/proptax/ or by calling the Comptrollerís Property Tax Assistance Division at (800) 252-9121and press "2" to access the menu, then press "1" to contact the Information Services Team.