Assessor

The duties of the Assessor is to appraise and assess all real property between the first Monday of January and July 1st, and all personal property between January 1st and May 31st (ACA 26-26-1408 and 26-26-1101). All property in the state shall be assessed according to its value on the first day of January except merchants and manufacturers inventory that is assessed at its average value during the year immediately proceeding the first day of January (AAC 26-26-1201). 

ASSESSMENT DEADLINE
All personal property and business personal property must be assessed between January 1st and May 31st.  After May 31st, there is a 10% late assessment fee and penalties as required.

HOMESTEAD CREDIT
A homestead is a property that is used as your principle place of residence and you are the owner of record or are buying on a recorded contract.  You may be eligible for up to $350 credit on your real estate taxes.  To apply for a Homestead Credit, come by the Assessor's office and fill out a form.  Once you have applied for the credit, you do not have to reapply unless you have purchased a new home or moved.  All homesteads must be applied for by October 15th of each year.

DISABLED OR 65 OR OLDER FREEZE
If you are 65 years of age or older or you are 100% disabled, then you may qualify for a freeze on your real estate taxes.  This freeze is placed on your real estate value that is your homestead.  This does not include land that is priced as agriculture, such as timber or pasture land, or rental property.  If you qualify for this freeze, then come by the Assessor's office and fill out a form and provide us with proper documentation verifying age or date of disability.
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

1.  What property in this state is subject to taxation? All property that is not exempt under the constitution, ACA 26-3-201. Property that is exempt under the Arkansas Constitution is: (1) public property used exclusively for public purposes; (2) churches used as such; (3) cemeteries used exclusively as such; (4) school buildings and apparatus; (5) libraries and grounds used exclusively for school purposes; and (6) buildings and grounds and material used exclusively for charity, Ark. Constitution Art. 16 Sec. 5. (7) All capital invested in a textile mill for the manufacture of cotton and fiber goods in any manner is exempt for seven years from the date of the location of said mill, Arkansas Constitution Amd. 12. (8) Intangible personal property may be designated as one or more classes of personal property and such class or classes may be exempted by the legislature, Arkansas Constitution Amd. 57. All intangible personal property has been exempted by the legislature, ACA 26-3-302. Household furniture and furnishings, clothing, appliances, and other personal property within the home, if not held for sale, rental, or other commercial or professional use, are exempt, Arkansas Constitution Amd. 71.
    
2.  What is property tax in Arkansas based upon? All real and tangible personal property subject to taxation shall be taxable according to its value, Ark. Constitution, Article 16, Sec. 5. All property assessments shall be made in relative proportion to the true and full value thereof, ACA 26-24-104, ACA 26-26-303.
 
3.  What is the current assessment rate to be used in property tax assessment in the state of Arkansas?  The assessment rate is 20% of true, actual, or market value, ACA 26-26-303.

4.  How is the amount of the tax on a taxpayer’s real property in the state of Arkansas determined?
a) All properties in the county must be listed, ACA 26-26-903.
b) The property is appraised by mass appraisers professionally designated by the State of Arkansas. The appraisers determine the market value, aka true value or full appraised value. This value is arrived at by determining the properties’ most probable selling price or current value estimate as of the statutory valuation date.
c) A determination is made as to whether the property qualifies for an exemption under the Arkansas Constitution or whether the property is owned by an instrumentality of the federal government and thus immune from local property tax.
d) The full assessed value is determined by multiplying the market value by the Arkansas assessment rate level of 20%.
e) If the parcel is not a taxpayer's homestead used as the taxpayer's principal place of residence, then for the first assessment following reappraisal, any increase in the taxable assessed value of the parcel shall be limited to not more than ten percent (10%) of the taxable assessed value of the parcel for the previous year.  In each year thereafter the taxable assessed value shall increase by an additional ten percent (10%) of the taxable assessed value of the parcel for the year prior to the first assessment that resulted from reappraisal but shall not exceed the full assessed value determined by the most recent reappraisal.
f) Except as provided in paragraph g), if the parcel is a taxpayer's homestead used as the taxpayer's principal place of residence then for the first assessment following reappraisal, any increase in the taxable assessed value of the parcel shall be limited to not more than five percent (5%) of the taxable assessed value of the parcel for the previous year.  In each year thereafter the taxable assessed value shall increase by an additional five percent (5%) of the taxable assessed value of the parcel for the year prior to the first assessment that resulted from reappraisal but shall not exceed the full assessed value as determined by the most recent reappraisal.
g) If a homestead owner’s taxable assessed value was frozen prior to the current assessment year, it will only change in the following circumstances: the current or a subsequent reassessment establishes that the taxable assessed value of his/her property has decreased; the current or future owner no longer qualifies under Amendment 79 for the freeze: the full assessed value of any substantial improvement, as defined in ACD Rule 4.08.2, will be added to the taxable assessed value of the property.
h) Following the completion of all appeal proceedings, the tax is determined by multiplying the taxable assessed value by the current prevailing millage rates, ACA 26-26-303.)    
i) If applicable, a homestead tax credit of up to three hundred and fifty dollars ($350.00) is applied, ACA 26-26-1118, Amd. 79 Sec. 3.
j) The resulting dollar amount is the amount of taxes due on the property.
 
5.  How is the amount of tax on a taxpayer’s personal property in the state of Arkansas determined?
a) Every person of full age and sound mind shall list the non-household tangible personal property of which he is the owner with the assessor, ACA 26-26-903.
b) Using procedures established by the Arkansas Assessment Coordination Department, the assessor appraises the property to determine the true market value.
c) The assessed value is determined by multiplying the true market value of the property by the assessment level of twenty percent 20%. ACA 26-26-303. The resulting number is the assessed value of the property.
d) Following the completion of all appeal proceedings, the tax is arrived at by multiplying the assessed value by the prevailing millage rate, ACA 26-26-303.
e) The resulting dollar amount is the amount of taxes due on the property.
 
6.  What is meant by the term "county-wide reappraisal"?  A cyclical review program begun pursuant to the terms of Act 1185 of 1999, ACA 26-26-1901.

7.  How often does a county have to conduct a county-wide reappraisal?  Every three (3) years or every five (5) years depending upon whether the county is a fast growth or a slow growth county as described in the statute, ACA 26-26-1902.

8.  Are property taxes in Arkansas paid the same year they are assessed? No, beginning with the taxes for the year 2010, they are paid on or before October 15, the following year, ACA 26-36-201.

9.  What is the last day for listing all real and non-household tangible personal property for assessment? May 31 of each year, ACA 26-26-201.
 
10.  Is there is a penalty on all persons and property delinquent in listing real and non-household tangible personal property for assessment? Yes, ten percent (10%) of all taxes due, in addition, there is a charge of fifty cents ($.50) to go to the assessor’s office for each delinquent listing, ACA 26-26-201.
 
11.  What is the last day for paying real and personal property tax, without penalty, in the state of in Arkansas? Beginning with the taxes for the year 2010, taxes are due and payable from the first business day in March to and including October 15th. The collector will extend a penalty of ten percent (10%) if payment is not made within the specified time, ACA 26-36-201.
 
12.  If October 15th falls on Saturday, Sunday or a holiday observed by the United States Post Office is the deadline for paying taxes extended? Yes, the taxpayer will have up to and including the next business day following the Saturday, Sunday, or holiday upon which October 15th fell, ACA 26-36-201.
 
13.  Who must list, with the assessor, all real and non-household tangible personal property they own in the county? Every owner of full age and sound mind of property except that the assessor may relieve them of this duty by using a list from the previous year. ACA 26-26-903.
 
14.  Who must list or assess property for persons not of full age or sound mind or others? The property of a ward must be listed by his guardian; the property of a minor, idiot, or lunatic having no guardian must be listed by his father if living, and if not, by his mother if living, and if not by the person having charge of the property; by the trustee for property of a trust held for a beneficiary; by the executor or administrator of an estate; by the president, principal accounting officer, partner or agent of any company, firm, body politic, or corporation, ACA 26-26-904.
 
15. Is all real and personal property in the state of Arkansas assessed and taxed every year? Yes, real property, ACA 26-26-1101, and personal property, ACA 26-26-1408.
 
16.  Do all real and personal property taxes constitute a lien on personal property? Yes, and the lien stays on the property into whomever’s hands it passes until it is paid, ACA 26-34-101. In addition property tax liens cannot be waived or terminated by anyone or any entity, AG Opinion No. 2010-134.
 
17.  Is it necessary to the validity of an assessment or a sale of real or personal property for delinquent taxes that the property is assessed to the true owner?  No, the taxes are a charge upon the real and personal property regardless of to whom it is assessed. A sale of such property will vest title, encumbered by the tax lien, in the purchaser without regard to who owned it when assessed or when sold, ACA 26-34-102.
 
18. Do personal property taxes have to be paid at the same time real property taxes are paid?  Yes, any county collector willfully accepting payment of general real estate taxes without requiring the payment of personal property taxes that are due as shown on the tax records shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and fined accordingly, ACA 26-35-601.
 
19.  In what jurisdiction in the state is property assessed? In the taxing district where the property is located and kept, ACA 26-26-1102.
 
20.  What is the lien date and what does it mean? All property taxes shall be a lien upon and bind the property assessed from the first Monday in January of the year in which the assessment was made and continue until the taxes, with any accrued penalty shall be paid. The taxes shall be a preference over all judgments, executions, encumbrances, or liens when-so-ever created, ACA 26-34-101, AG Opinion No. 2010-134.
 
21.  Who is real or personal property, held under a lease, assessed to? If the lease is for a term of 10 years and the property belongs to the state or any religious, scientific, or benevolent society or institution, whether incorporated or not, and school, seminary, saline, or other lands, it shall be assessed to the lease holder, ACA 26-26-905, and if not, it is assessed to the owner of the property, ACA 26-3-201.
 
22.  Does any entity have the power to terminate or waive a legally assessed property tax and thereby extinguish the lien thereof? No, the lien stays with the property no matter whose hands it passes into, ACA 26-34-101, Bridewell v. Morton, 46 Ark.73 (1885); First Natl. Bank v. Tribble, 155  Ark. 264, 244 S.W. 33 (1922); AG Opinion No. 2010-134. However, if the new owner is a governmental entity it is immune and cannot be sued for delinquent taxes, Arkansas Constitution, Article 5, Section 20. The lien remains in effect while the government owns the property but will be collectable from anyone who takes a transfer of the property from such governmental entity. A remedy available to the county against the governmental entity, that may or may not be successful, is to pursue the claim before the state claims commission, AG Opinion No. 2008-023.
 
23.  Is there a statute of limitations on the collection of fully assessed delinquent real or personal property taxes?  No, ACA 26-34-101.  However, no suit may be brought for the recovery of overdue taxes accruing because of the underassessment of tangible personal and real property resulting from an error of the county assessor after three (3) years from the date on which the taxes should have been collected in regular course, ACA 26-34-105.