Assessor urges property owners to seek tax relief from Powerhouse fire damage

Must be filed within one year

OW Staff Writer | 6/14/2013, midnight
Los Angeles County Firefighters continue to battle the 32,000-acre Powerhouse Fire near Palmdale. The fire, which was 60 percent contained as of late Monday — up from 40 percent earlier in the day — has destroyed six homes and damaged nine since it broke out on Thursday. Photo by Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department

— The Office of the Los Angeles County Assessor is urging property owners affected by the Powerhouse fire to contact local assessor offices for information and assistance about tax relief for property damage of $10,000 or more. Structures may qualify for tax relief.

The Office of the Assessor has deployed resources and personnel to help property owners obtain tax relief information for their property that experienced damage or loss from the fire storm. Under state law, home and business owners may qualify for a temporary reduction in assessed value. Reassessment could mean a lower tax bill for the period between the time the damage occurred and the repair or replacement of damaged structures. Section 170 of the California Revenue and Taxation Code requires the Misfortune and Calamity application form to be submitted within one year of the date of damage. Photographs and any other documentation, such as repair estimates, should accompany the form.

The Office of the Assessor has contacted the local and state fire officials to secure a listing of damaged properties. Assessor personnel will provide “Misfortune and Calamity” forms and information at evacuation centers. Appraisers will conduct field visits to damaged areas once fire officials provide clearance.

Inquiries can be directed to the Assessor’s Sylmar District Offices at (818) 833-6000. Misfortune/Calamity claim forms can be downloaded below.