PROPERTY ASSESSMENTS AND ASSESSMENT REVIEW BOARD
To ensure property owners have a voice in the property assessment system, The Municipal Government Act has set out a complaints and appeals system for property owners who have concerns about their assessment. The Assessment Review Board consists of citizens that review appeals registered by residents against their annual assessment. The following information provides details on working with the Assessment Review Board to file an assessment complaint.
Filing a Complaint
Before filing a complaint
It is recommended that property owners contact the assessor to discuss any concerns they may have regarding their assessment. The assessor can provide information on how the assessment was prepared and help property owners determine whether their assessment is correct and equitable in relation to similar properties.
The assessor may also make corrections without a complaint being filed. If there is still disagreement after discussion with the assessor, property owners may file a complaint with the Assessment Review Board.
An assessment complaint does not exempt you from paying your taxes on time. To avoid late payment penalties, you must pay your taxes on or before the due date. If a complaint is successful, there will be an adjustment to the tax roll.
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Basis For Complaints
A complaint may be about any of the following items as shown on an assessment or tax notice:
- the description of a property or business
- the name or mailing address of an assessed person or taxpayer
- an assessment amount
- an assessment class
- an assessment sub-class
- the type of property
- the type of improvement
- school support
- whether the property is assessable
- whether the property is exempt from taxation under Part 10 of the Act, but not if the exemption is given by an agreement under section 364.1(11) that does not expressly provide for the right to make the complaint
- any extent to which the property is exempt from taxation under a bylaw under section 364.1 of the Act
- whether the collection of tax on the property is deferred under a bylaw under section 364.1 of the Act
- designated officer’s refusal to grant an exemption or deferral under a bylaw under section 364.1 of the Act
Complaints may relate to any assessed property, but may not be made about any tax rate. Further, the Assessment Review Board has no jurisdiction to deal with a complaint about linear property.
Who Can Make a Complaint
Only an “assessed person” may make a complaint to the Assessment Review Board. An agent or representative may file a complaint on your behalf if you complete an Agent Authorization Form and include it with your complaint.
Reason for Complaint
A valid complaint must include reasons for the complaint. It is not sufficient to state only that the assessment is too high or that it may be incorrect. The complainant must:
- indicate what information shown on an assessment notice or tax notice is incorrect
- explain in what respect that information is incorrect
- indicate what the correct information is
- identify the requested assessed value, if the complaint relates to an assessment
How to File a Complaint
Provincial legislation and Town bylaws outline how complaints must be made:
- Your complaint must be submitted in writing via the Assessment Review Board Complaint Form set out by the Government of Alberta.
- It is important to complete all fields on the complaint form that are relevant to your property, including:
- what information shown on the assessment notice is incorrect
- in what respect that information is incorrect, including identifying the specific issues related to the incorrect information that are to be decided by the Assessment Review Board and the grounds in support of these issues
- what the correct information is
- the requested assessed value, if the complaint relates to an assessment
- be sure to include a statement specifying the date and outcome of the discussion with the assessor including details of any issues or facts agreed to (if you have not discussed the matters of the complaint with an assessor, specify why a discussion was not held); you may attach additional information to the complaint form if the space provided is insufficient
- an Assessment Review Board must not hear any matter in support of an issue that is not identified on the complaint form
- you must include your mailing address
- should you have an agent file a complaint on your behalf, you must complete and sign the Assessment Complaints Agent Authorization form (see link above)
- your complaint form must be accompanied by the appropriate filing fee or the complaint will be invalid
- incomplete forms, complaints submitted after the filing deadline or complaints without the required filing fee are invalid
- complaint forms and fees may be postmarked on the final date of complaint to
- for further complaint process information, the Assessment Review Board Clerk may be contacted at 403-510-8083
How Much are the Complaint Fees?
Complaint fees for the assessment complaint process are as follows
- $50 per complaint