Last call for filing a 2016 property tax appeal in the Town of Trumbull

posted by Ronald Kowalski February 12, 2016
Tax Appeal deadline approaching soon

Considering the merits of a tax appeal in the Town of Trumbull? For those still debating whether to take action following the October 2015 revaluation, the time to act is now. As of the publishing date, the Town of Trumbull’s deadline for filing a property tax appeal is just a week away.


According to valuation law, aggrieved parties who believe a municipal real estate tax assessment does not accurately reflect the property’s fair market value as of the valuation date have a right to challenge the assessment. Statutory timeframes for appealing the valuation do apply, however. To protest an assessment on the October 1, 2015 Grand List, a written appeal must be filed with the Board of Assessment Appeals on or before February 20 of the next year. Because the statutory deadline for 2016 falls on a Saturday, appeals must be filed with the Town of Trumbull’s Board of Assessment Appeals by Friday, February 19, 2016.

For those who own real property in different Connecticut municipalities, it’s important to know that tax appeal filing deadlines can vary in the year following a revaluation. Greenwich and Bridgeport have granted a month-long extension for filing property tax appeals, for instance; while Westport and Fairfield have not extended a grace period.

Not sure when the filing deadline falls in a given municipality? Contact the assessor’s office right away to identify how much time is left to file a written tax appeal for 2016. View a list of cities and towns that conducted a real estate revaluation in 2015.

Three questions that can increase the odds of a successful property tax appeal

In almost all cases, parties who wish to seek an adjustment of a municipal tax assessment but miss the deadline for filing with the Board of Assessment Appeals will also lose the ability to challenge the assessment in Superior Court for the current tax year. Therefore, even if property owners are still determining how to best support a claim, acting quickly to file an appeal can keep the door open for adjustments in the current tax year. Additionally, over the course of a five-year revaluation cycle, filing an appeal early in the process yields the largest potential tax savings.

Once a decision is made to file an appeal, answering these three questions can increase the odds of a favorable outcome:

1) What documentation can be gathered to the appeal? Look for comparative sale listings or an appraisal of the property to support a tax assessment adjustment. For commercial properties such as retail space or multi-unit residential buildings that are rented to tenants, income statements and commercial lease agreements may also be helpful. Learn more about the steps for appealing a revaluation.

2) Is professional support needed to support the appeal? Complex valuation factors are likely to come into play for high-end residential properties or commercial property. Partnering with experienced real estate appraisers and legal counsel can save time, increase the likelihood of success, and potentially maximize the tax savings that can be obtained through an appeal. Learn more about legal advice for tax appeals.

3) What is the plan of action if the Board of Assessment Appeals issues an unfavorable decision? For aggrieved parties who do not obtain the adjustment sought through the municipal Board of Assessment Appeals, there is an additional two-month window for filing an appeal of the board’s decision through the Superior Court. Know the options for next steps, and be prepared to take additional action within the allotted timeframe.

For those seeking a 2016 property tax adjustment in the Town of Trumbull, the first step is simply to act now. Remember: to preserve the right to seek an adjustment in 2016, a written appeal must be filed with the Board of Assessment Appeals by Friday, February 19th, 2016.

Subscribe to receive our quarterly newsletter with law tips, case studies and firm news.