Update: The IRS has released a statement that says “whether a taxpayer is allowed a deduction for the prepayment of state or local real property taxes in 2017 depends on whether the taxpayer makes the payment in 2017 and the real property taxes are assessed prior to 2018. A prepayment of anticipated real property taxes that have not been assessed prior to 2018 are not deductible in 2017.”
Tarrant County property owners may prepay their 2018 property taxes through the end of the year to take advantage of deductions that won’t be allowed under the new federal tax bill.
County officials made the decision Friday morning, after dozens of local property owners called county offices asking to pay early.
“We are not going to prevent taxpayers from enjoying any additional benefit that might come from this,” Tarrant County Tax Assessor-Collector Ron Wright said. “We will accept payments forward on next year’s taxes, if people want to do that to maximize their deductions.
“We’ve never done this before.”
President Donald Trump signed the bill into law Friday morning. Under the tax law, taxpayers may no longer deduct state and local property taxes over $10,000 from their federal income taxes. But it’s not clear if people who prepay 2018 property taxes of $10,000 before the end of this year will be able to claim them as an itemized deduction.
“We are making no judgment as to whether that is acceptable or not to the IRS,” Wright said.
There have been no changes to Texas tax law relating to the new federal tax bill, according to a news release from the Tarrant County Tax Assessor-Collector’s office.
The tax assessor-collector’s office will try to estimate what the 2018 tax bills will be, for those who are interested, but caution that property has yet to be appraised for next year.
“We have no idea what the value or the bill will be next year, so it’s an estimate,” Wright said. “But we will accept the paying forward of taxes.”
Property owners may call the county at 817-884-1100 and ask to prepay their 2018 property taxes. Those early payments will be accepted through Dec. 31.
Tax bills were sent out earlier this year for the 2017 property taxes.
In general, those property tax payments are not due until Jan. 31. But many pay their bill before the end of the year to qualify for a tax deduction.
Any 2018 estimated payments would be in addition to those payments.
A note will soon be posted on the Tarrant County Tax Assessor Collector’s website letting residents know how they can make the pre-payments online.
The Tarrant County Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office will be closed Christmas Day.
There is much uncertainty about what will be allowed under the new tax bill President Donald Trump signed Friday.
“Federal tax law could change, but we cannot advise you regarding your tax deductions,” the tax assessor-collector statement read. “For that type of advice, you should consult your accountant or other tax professional.”
“This is going to be a first,” Wright said. “But we are going to do it.”
Who to call
Property owners also may call the county at 817-884-1100 and ask to prepay their 2018 property taxes. Those early payments will be accepted through Dec. 31. Prepayments made by mail must be postmarked on or before Dec. 31, 2017.