Frequently Asked Questions - Assessor
Business Personal Property

Q: What information about my business personal property assets should I be reporting?

A: 

The asset list should include the purchase price and year purchased. If you don’t have the information available, you may supply an owner’s estimate of value for the item. All items used in the business should be reported whether you purchased the item new, at an auction or if it was a donation or gift.

 

If the purchase price/cost is known, the asset will be depreciated based on depreciation tables supplied by the Oregon Department of Revenue. If the value is “owner’s estimate” or if the assessor’s office needs to apply an estimate, the item will not depreciate.

 

You will also need to report assets that you have disposed of or sold so they may be removed from the asset list. Include the date, reason for removal and where the asset went to.



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Q: What are examples of business personal property assets that I should be reporting?

A: 

Taxable business personal property includes, but isn't limited to, machinery, equipment, furniture (desks, chairs, filing cabinets, artwork, etc.), phones, computers, heavy equipment such as excavators and backhoes, tools, books and appliances used in a business including any property not currently being used, property placed in storage, property held for sale, expensed items or items fully depreciated by federal standards.
 
Some personal property is not taxable.  This includes inventory for sale, computer software, items used exclusively for personal use in and around your home, licensed vehicles. If you are unsure of whether an item should be included, you may include it on the list. If it is not a taxable asset, we will not place it on the assessment roll.


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Q: I just received a tax bill for my business and have been assessed a penalty for late filing or not reporting. What are my options?

A: You may appeal the late filing penalty to the local Board of Property Tax Appeals (BOPTA).

BOPTA may waive all or a portion of a late filing penalty if:

  • You can prove there was good and sufficient cause for the late filing, or
  • The year for which the return was filed was both the first year that a return was required to be filed and the first year you filed a return.
Good and sufficient cause is defined as an extraordinary circumstance that includes, but is not limited to:
  • Illness, absence, or disability which substantially impairs a taxpayer’s ability to make a timely application.
  • Reasonable reliance on misinformation provided by county assessment and taxation staff or Oregon Department of Revenue personnel.
Please contact the County Clerk's Office for BOPTA appeal information


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Q: I do business in more than one county in Oregon. Where should I report my assets?

A: You will need to file a return in each county you do business in and report the assets that were in that county on January 1. It's not unusual for local businesses to report assets that are in Josephine County on January 1 to our office and report assets in Jackson County on January 1 to the Jackson County Assessor's Office.


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Q: My business is moving to a different location. What information does the assessor’s office need?

A: If the business is staying in Josephine County, the assessor’s office simply needs the new address so that you are billed at the correct tax rate for your location.  If the business is moving to a different county, you will need to notify our office of the date you leave Josephine County and you will also need to report your assets to your new county’s assessor.


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Q: What should I do now that I have closed/will be closing my business?

A: Inform the assessor’s office of the closing date of the business and explain what happened to the assets. Were the assets sold to another business? Are you storing the assets? Were the assets discarded?


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Q: I have/will be buying an existing business. What information does the assessor’s office need?

A: The assessor’s office will need to know the date you took possession of the business assets, an asset list and your mailing address. Be aware that property taxes follow the assets and you may wish to contact the tax collector's office to determine if there are outstanding taxes owed.


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Q: I have/will be starting a business. What information does the assessor’s office need?

A: The assessor’s office will need to know the date the business opens, the location of the business and a list of the business assets. The asset list should include the purchase date and purchase price of each item. 


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Q: Is personal property taxed at a different rate than real property?

A: No. Business personal property is taxed using the same rates as the real property upon which it is located.


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Q: I have sold my business and it is now under new ownership. What information does the assessor’s office need?

A: The assessor’s office will need to know the sale date, contact information for the new owner and a list of assets that were sold to the new business owner.  We need to be informed as to what happened to any assets that were not included in the sale.  Depending upon the timing of the sale you may be responsible for one more year of property taxes for the business.


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Q: Can I get an extension to file my personal property return?

A: No. Effective with 2016 filings, House Bill 2484 amended ORS 308.290 changing the due date and eliminating filing extensions.


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