COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on businesses, business owners and their employees. However, State law mandates when all property taxes are due. Unsecured property taxes related to business property, leased equipment, boats and aircraft for fiscal year 2020-21 are due on August 31.
During these unprecedented times, Treasurer Shari L. Freidenrich recommends that taxpayers, who can pay, should “Stay Safe and Pay Online” at ocgov.com/octaxbill. There is no service fee to pay online by eCheck, and taxpayers who pay by midnight on August 31 will receive same-day credit and a receipt that can be printed or emailed. Taxpayers who pay by mail must have a U.S. Postal Service date stamp for August 31 or earlier. Taxpayers should consider having payment envelopes hand cancelled and can go to ocgov.com/postmarks for more information to ensure that all mailed payments are timely received.
In person payments are due by 5 p.m. at the County Service Center or can be dropped off in the Payment Depository Box located on Ross Street with adjacent parking. Unsecured tax bills not paid by the due date will be charged a 10 percent penalty plus a $75 collection fee.
“I understand and sympathize with the financial impacts that COVID-19 has caused Orange County taxpayers,” said Treasurer Freidenrich. “Current State law requires that the owner of record as of January 1, 2020 be responsible for paying the unsecured property tax even if the unsecured property has been sold or otherwise disposed of after January 1. Unlike secured property taxes, unsecured property taxes are not prorated by time of ownership.”
The new owner of the unsecured property is not responsible for paying the property taxes on the personal property purchased until January 1, 2021. Treasurer Freidenrich encourages taxpayers to sign up for text and email unsecured property tax information at ocgov.com/ocunsecuredreminder.
As a reminder, unsecured property tax bills are not issued for businesses, boats or aircraft that have an assessed value of less than $3,000. Taxpayers can view prior tax bills online and also view an online statement to see if any current or delinquent unsecured property taxes are owed. This information is available by going to ocgov.com/octaxbill and scroll to the Unsecured Property Tax Bill section in the middle of the page. You can search by business name, the tax collector reference number, the CF Number, the N Number or the tax year and assessment number.
In July, unsecured property tax bills totaling $237 million were sent to 64,879 businesses, 23,916 boat and aircraft owners and 26,030 leased property owners.
This article was released by the Office of the Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector.