Is it legal for you to help other people protest their property-tax appraisals?
04/28/2016 | Author: TAR Legal Staff
You’re walking the dog and start chatting with a neighbor. She’s very upset about her property-tax appraisal and wants to fight it. She knows that you’re a REALTOR® and asks you to help her. Can you?
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation licenses property-tax professionals and requires such a license if you’re representing a person at a protest hearing, negotiating with the appraisal district on behalf of another person, or advising another person about a matter that can be protested.
However, because you’re licensed by the Texas Real Estate Commission, you are exempt from this additional licensing requirement as long as you’re providing property tax services relating to single-family residences or ranches.
But TREC is still watching
If, for example, your neighbor pays you to perform a comparative market analysis, advise her as to which properties help her case, or represent her at the hearing, the Texas Real Estate Commission oversees those activities. That means that she can file a complaint with TREC about your property-tax protest services just as she would file a complaint if you sold her a house.
Keep in mind that TREC’s oversight of all your services is triggered when you charge a fee. Therefore, if you protest someone’s property taxes without charging a fee, you don’t need a license, and TREC has no jurisdiction over your activities.
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