You are probably aware the City is operating at minimal staffing levels in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) issue. The Real Estate Assessor’s Office is following the City Manager’s guidelines for teleworking whenever possible and operating with a minimal staff. This posture will affect our ability to respond to questions and appeals of your 2020 reassessment.
I encourage you to send your questions or file appeals via email at firstname.lastname@example.org . You may also mail your questions or appeals to the address as shown on our website. The use of email or traditional mail is our best way to preserve a record of your concern and insure we respond when our work routine returns to normal. We will respond to your message as soon as we can. I will make sure your concern or appeal will be heard despite any delays we experience.
I appreciate your patience as we work together to limit our exposure to COVID-19.
W.A. (Pete) Rodda
If you disagree with the proposed assessed value as stated on your reassessment notice, you may schedule an informal appeal with this office by calling 757-823-1343. Informal appeals are basically a conference (in-person or by telephone) with an appraiser. The informal appeals period starts immediately upon receipt of your assessment notice in March and ends on May 8 annually.
You may also file a formal appeal with the Board of Review. The deadline for submission of formal appeals to the Board is the last business day of May. A link to the official downloadable Board of Review application form is located here.
Please note – the Board of Review requires an original appeal packet plus five complete sets of copies of all material to be presented to the Board. This information must be submitted no later than 5 PM EDT on the last business day of May or postmarked no later than May 31, 2020. It is entirely the discretion of the Board to accept information submitted the day of the hearing.
The valuation of a property may only be discussed with the property owner or a duly authorized agent for the owner. If appealing to the Board of Review, a separate application must be filed for each parcel.
If the appeal is to be filed by a representative of the owner, an original Letter of Authorization signed by the property owner is required. The original Letter of Authorization must be on the owner’s letterhead. The letter must specify the assessment year for which the authorization is granted and be dated within that calendar year. The name and title of the person signing the authorization must be printed and the authorizing signature must be notarized.
Under the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), appraisals not specifically intended for the purpose of appealing assessment values cannot be accepted by the Assessor’s Office or Board of Review. Appraisals submitted for assessment appeals should include the following:
The "Purpose of the Assignment" must be stated as "developing market value for the appeal of ad valorem taxation value."
The "Intended User" must state "The City of Norfolk Real Estate Assessor."
The appraisal date must be July 1, 2020.
What to Expect at Your Formal Board of Review Hearing
- Appointments with the Board of Review are scheduled 15 to 20 minutes apart.
- Appellants are given five minutes to present their case showing that the proposed assessment does not represent fair market value or is not assessed uniformly and equitably with comparable properties.
- Such evidence (which was to have been submitted by May 31) should include information such as photos, surveys, repair estimates and any other documents that support the reason for the appeal.
- At the conclusion of the appellant’s presentation, the Board will ask to hear evidence from the Assessor’s staff in support of the proposed assessment. Copies of any documents presented to the Board by the Assessor’s staff will be available to the appellant 10 workdays prior to the hearing upon request.
- The Board may ask questions of the appellant and/or the Assessor’s staff in order to clarify any issues.
- The Board will deliberate and provide a ruling. The Board may ask for additional information or conduct a site visit if they feel it necessary. The Board may also choose to delay their decision until all appeals on similar properties have been heard.
- Once the Board has concluded all scheduled appeal hearings and made their final rulings, decision letters will be mailed to the appellants on forms approved by the State Department of Taxation.
Norfolk City Code, Sec. 24-195 - Relief From Assessments
Any person aggrieved by any assessment made by the assessor appointed under this article may appeal such assessment. In order to appeal the assessment for the current tax year, such appeal shall be filed with the assessor on or before May 8 of such tax year and or with the board of review of real estate assessments on or before the last business day in May of any year. Appeals filed subsequent to the dates set forth in this section may be heard by the assessor at any time, but not by the board of review until the following year. Any person, or the city, aggrieved by any assessment made by the assessor or by the board of review of real estate assessments may apply for relief in the manner provided by section 58.1-3980, et seq, of the Code of Virginia.
In accordance with Section 58.1-3379.B of the Code of Virginia, "In all cases brought before the board, there shall be a presumption that the valuation determined by the assessor is correct. The burden of proof on appeal to the board shall be on the taxpayer to rebut the presumption and show by a preponderance of the evidence that the property in question is valued at more than its fair market value or that the assessment is not uniform in its application and that it was not arrived at in accordance with generally accepted appraisal practices, procedures, rules, and standards as prescribed by nationally recognized professional appraisal organizations such as the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO) and applicable Virginia law relating to valuation of property."