Auditors prepared to reassess home values after flooding

Published 10:29 am Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cleaning up from flooding and other disasters can be a daunting process. Sometimes, the damages may be too costly to repair completely.

There is, however, tax relief for those whose homes have been damaged.

The Lawrence County Auditor’s Office is waiting in the wings to make adjustments for next year.

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There are valuation deduction forms for destroyed or damaged property available at the Lawrence County Emergency Management Agency. There are separate forms for manufactured homes, such as mobile homes and trailers, as well as houses and barns.

Chris Kline, chief deputy auditor, said that forms can be picked up at the EMA and turned in at the auditor’s office. He also said that they are working to get the forms available on their website,

“Then we’ll send out an auditor out to verify the damage and take pictures of the damage,” said Kline.

The forms not only apply to flood damage, but also to fire damage or other calamities.

“Not normal wear and tear,” said Kline

The forms are basic, and require the owner’s name and address, as well as the address of the damaged property. The form also requires a description of the damage including the date the damage occurred, the cause, estimated dollar amount of damage and amount of insurance money received if insured.

The forms must also be notarized.

“The adjustments will be made for the following year,” said Kline.

Deadline for deductions of damages that happened within the first nine months of the year is Dec. 31. For property that was damaged during the last 3 months of the year, the deadline is Jan. 31 of the following year.

To get more information and report damage, call the EMA at 533-4375. The auditor’s office can be reached at 533-4310 or 533-4311.