What is the Homestead Exemption?
The original homestead exemption was created many years ago. Its intention was to exempt as many homes as possible from the payment of property taxes. In 1980, voters, statewide, approved an increase in the homestead exemption to its current level of $75,000.
The homestead exemption allows that the first $7500 of assessed value on an owner occupied home will be exempt from property taxation.
The homestead exemption is permanent as long as the homeowner continues to own and permanently reside at that location. If the owner moves to another location or sells the property, the homestead exemption on that property will be canceled.
Only one homestead exemption in the State of Louisiana can be granted on a home that is owned and permanently occupied as a domicile. A homestead exemption cannot be applied to a property that is not permanently occupied by its owner.
How do I file for Homestead Exemption?
You must appear in person at either location of the Jefferson Parish Assessor's office to sign for the homestead exemption. You should bring with you a recorded copy of your act of sale for the property and a photo identification showing the address of the property on which the homestead exemption is being filed. If a husband and wife own the property jointly, only one has to appear in person. After you have initially filed for your homestead exemption, each year thereafter, you will receive a receipt in the mail showing your homestead exemption is permanent. You will no longer be eligible for the homestead exemption on that home should you move to another location or sell your house.
What is the Special Assessment Level Homestead Exemption for Senior Citizens and for Persons with Certain Disabilities?
In 1998 a constitutional amendment was passed that allows the assessed value on a home owned and occupied by a person 65 years of age or older and who meets certain income requirements to receive a "freeze" in the assessed value of their home. This "freeze" became effective January 1, 2000.
In 2006 a constitutional amendment was passed that allows the assessed value on a home owned and occupied by a person with certain disabilities and who meet certain income requirements to receive a "freeze" in the assessed value of their home. This freeze became effective January 1, 2007.
The purpose of this legislation was to provide property owners in their senior years and property owners with certain disabilities with some protection from escalating property values due to inflation. Since its inception, this special assessment level exemption has led to thousands of dollars in savings for seniors and property owners with certain disabilities especially during the years when property values are reassessed.
Homeowners who are 65 years or older, or who have a permanent disability, or are the surviving spouse of a member of the armed forces or Louisiana National Guard killed in action, missing in action, or a prisoner of war may be able to "freeze" the assessed value at which their home is assessed if they meet certain conditions. The homeowner must have a homestead exemption applied to the property for which they are seeking the special assessment level and must meet certain income requirements.
The Special Assessment Level Homestead Exemption "freeze" only freezes the assessed value of your home. It does not "freeze" the tax rate on which your annual property tax bill is based. Your property tax bill may vary from year to year based on millage rate changes. Millage rates are levied by each taxing body. The Assessor's office is not responsible for setting millage rates.
If property owners continue to approve new millages, your taxes will continue to increase.
To qualify for the Senior Citizens Special Assessment Level Homestead Exemption "freeze" you must meet both of the following: You must be 65 years of age or older by the end of the year in which you are applying. Additionally you must meet the income requirement as set forth by the Louisiana legislature. This income requirement changes annually. You may call the Assessor's office for the most up to date income requirement. Once you qualify for the special assessment level homestead exemption, it will become permanent as long as you continue to own and occupy your home and as long as the value of the property does not increase more than twenty-five percent because of construction or reconstruction.
To qualify for the Disability-Related Special Assessment Level Homestead Exemption "freeze" you must meet the income requirement as set forth by the Louisiana legislature. This income requirement changes annually. You may call the Assessor's office for the most up to date income requirement. Please note that once you qualify for and receive the special assessment level homestead exemption for disability you must reapply each year. In addition to the income requirement, you must also meet one of the following requirements:
1. A homeowner who occupies their home and who has a service-connected disability rating of fifty percent or more by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.
2. The surviving spouse of a member of the armed forces of the United States or the Louisiana National Guard who owned and last occupied such property who was killed in action, or who is missing in action or is a prisoner of war for a period exceeding ninety days.
3. A homeowner who occupies their home and is permanently totally disabled as determined by a final non-appealable judgment of a court or as certified by a state or federal administrative agency charged with the responsibility for making determinations regarding disabilities.
What is the $15,000 homestead exemption for 100% disabled veterans?
The voters of Jefferson Parish recently passed this exemption into law and it becomes effective beginning January 1, 2012. This exemption is for a 100% disabled veteran as determined by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. In addition to the initial $7500 homestead exemption, it exempts from property taxation the next $7500 of assessed value of a home owned and occupied by a disabled veteran. Also, eligible for this exemption is the surviving spouse of a deceased veteran who had a service-connected disability rating of 100% and this exemption was in effect on the property prior to the death of the disabled veteran and as long as the surviving spouse resides in the home remains the owner.
An eligible owner shall apply for this special $15,000 homestead exemption by filing for and signing an application with the Assessor's office establishing that the owner qualifies for this exemption. The qualified homeowner must also produce documents from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs showing the extent of the disability.