Property tax penalty extension coming to a close

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The extension for late property tax payments is coming to a close. In March, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb issued an executive order requiring Indiana counties to extend adding penalties for 60 days for the Spring 2020 bills. As that time of relief comes to pass, any payment for spring taxes received after July 10 will receive the appropriate penalties, tax sale costs, and judgment fees.

County real estate parcels that have delinquencies or special assessments from last year’s spring installment that remain unpaid will cause the property to incur additional penalties and become eligible for the county’s annual tax sale. Once a parcel is certified for a tax sale, all delinquent taxes, penalties, and tax sale fees must be paid in order to remove the parcel from the sale. The 2020 Montgomery County Tax Sale will be on Oct. 2. A list of parcels and information about the tax sale and other county sales can be found at www.sriservices.com.

Montgomery County is open to the public, but taxpayers are highly encouraged to make payments and conduct business remotely if possible. Treasurer Heather Laffoon and her staff are available to answer questions in person, by phone, and by email at treasurer@montgomerycounty.in.gov. To check balances and other property details, taxpayers are directed to research their parcel and current balances at www.montgomerycounty.in.gov or www.beacon.schneidercorp.com. Because the May deadline is past, select the upcoming November invoice.

Payments received or post-dated by July 10 are considered on time and are accepted with several payment options.

Pay in the office. The Treasurer’s Office is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Social distancing is required and masks are encouraged.

Use a drop box. Two drop boxes are conveniently located at the courthouse and are checked multiple times daily. For all drop box payments, put payments in an envelope with payment coupons and a phone number or mark the envelope clearly with information to identify the taxpayer including the parcel number or address and a phone number for questions. An outdoor drop box is located on the south side of the courthouse under the awning and is checked multiple times daily. There is also a drop box inside the front entrance by the security station that is accessible during business hours. If paying by cash, please use the inside drop box and include exact change.

Mail in payments. Mail in payments to the Treasurer’s Office, 100 E Main St., Room 101, Crawfordsville, IN 47933. If a receipt is desired, include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Pay online. The county website is www.montgomerycounty.in.gov. On the home page, select Online Bill Pay. Next choose the Property Tax, Dog Taxes and Tax Payments option. Multiple parcels and dog taxes can be paid in the same transaction. Please be aware that using any type of debit or credit card will accrue a 2.95% service fee. Using bank routing numbers for an e-check payment instead has only a 95-cent charge. The current invoice to select is Nov. 10.

Pay by phone. By using the secure access line of 855-276-8051, taxpayers can make payments over the phone by entering the parcel number. Please be aware that using this service has additional fees applied.

Laffoon advises that though the county does not have formal payment plans, full and partial payments are accepted anytime throughout the year. Penalties will apply if installments are not paid in full by the due date.

To lower future property tax bills, many are eligible for deductions including the Homestead, Mortgage, Over 65, Blind and Disabled, Disabled Veteran or Geothermal. To check that eligibility or to update an address, visit the Auditor’s link at www.montgomerycounty.in.gov.

For more information, contact the appropriate office: Tax payments, Treasurer at 765-364-6410; deductions and address changes, Auditor at 765-364-6400; assessed values, Assessor at 765-364-6420; and ditch reconstruction fees, Surveyor at 765-361-3234.

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